Biz Buzz: ‘Entertainment’ polling | Inquirer Business

Biz Buzz: ‘Entertainment’ polling

/ 05:22 AM November 26, 2021

A head of a Sun Life Asset Management briefing for mutual fund clients via Zoom yesterday, an online survey was conducted to gauge whom viewers thought their friends would likely vote in 2022 to be the next CEO of the land.

Vice President Leni Robredo was the runaway winner in the poll, with a 67-percent share, followed by Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. with 25 percent. Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso got 5 percent, Panfilo Lacson 2 percent and Manny Pacquiao 1 percent. Bong Go got zero.

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This was by no means scientific and was for entertainment at best, as were most of the surveys coming out now. This was likewise stressed by political analyst Bob Herrera-Lim, managing director at advisory firm Teneo, who said only two pollsters—Social Weather Stations and Pulse Asia—were credible given their long operating history and scientific methodology (based on a base of registered voters and random sampling).

In both of these pollsters’ latest presidential surveys, Marcos is still the candidate to beat.

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The viewers of Sun Life’s briefing are presumed to be mostly from A, B and C economic classes, which altogether account for just 11 percent of the electorate, while classes D and E account for a combined 89 percent.

As to whether Bong Go could split Marcos’ votes (with a current share of 47 percent to 50 percent), the analyst said it’s unlikely.

On the other hand, he said Robredo’s rating improvement to reach the 15 percent to 20 percent range would make her a contender. “You have to give credit to the people who are running her campaign. It is much better than the Otso Diretso in 2019. It is much better than when Mar Roxas was running in 2016,” Herrera-Lim said.

But to do a Duterte—rise from the bottom and sustain the momentum—he said Robredo could not harp on COVID-19 management issues because Marcos won’t be affected by it.

“Leni has to make the Marcos presidency the issue,” he said, which could be quite difficult because the Philippines, for him, was “not a strong historical nation.”

“It’s one of our big failings. We do not consistently examine our history and I hope we can change.”

—Doris Dumlao-Abadilla

Leaner, meaner Converge

Shedding weight doesn’t work quite the same way in the stock market. Here, it can actually make you heavier and, thus, more attractive to a certain set of investors.

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We’re referring to the recent FTSE (Financial Times Stock Exchange) move to raise the “investability weight” of fiber internet company Converge ICT Solutions Inc. after its second largest shareholder unloaded a huge block of shares the previous week.

This was a signal for more foreign institutional money to enter since their holdings are benchmarked against the FTSE and other global indices.

The higher weight was possible after Converge’s public float—that portion of its outstanding shares that were freely tradable—went up to 26 percent from 20.4 percent after a unit of US private equity firm Warburg Pincius sold 420 million Converge shares in a private sale.

Converge president and cofounder Grace Uy said the higher weight would thus improve their visibility to investors looking to buy into the company.

The block sale has expectedly weighed on the company’s share price, although those who entered early were likely less worried, with Converge’s value still up about 100 percent since the start of the year.

Meanwhile, the Uys are working to meet and beat earlier targets. During its recent quarterly briefing, Converge announced it would achieve its goal to cover 55 percent of all households by 2023—a full two years ahead of schedule.

—Miguel R. Camus

Model vaccination effort

It’s not 100 percent, but City of Dreams Manila is at the next best level with 99 percent.

That’s the percentage of the integrated casino resort’s staff that has been fully immunized against Covid-19, thus earning it a coveted safety seal from health authorities.

Fully vaccinated staff are those who have completed the required vaccine dosage. The resort, which has ordered enough vaccines to vaccinate its staff, is currently inoculating their staff’s dependents, and their children under 18 years old will follow soon.

The announcement is timely as the luxury facility gears up to welcome more guests and reopen more facilities with the easing of Metro Manila to alert level 2.

“We are grateful to our colleagues who have taken the step toward protecting themselves, their families and colleagues, our guests and the community in general,” says the company’s president Geoff Andres.

We’re told that various initiatives were made by the resort to encourage the vaccination uptake, including two-day paid leaves on the day of the vaccination and after, to provide rest should the staff experience any postvax side effects, and continuously reinforcing the message that the vaccination is a collective effort and a compassionate step toward ending the pandemic.

Webinars conducted by medical authorities gave staff a better understanding on the benefits of being vaccinated.

More importantly, the resort allowed time for vaccine confidence to grow, as those who initially hesitated eventually agreed, upon seeing their colleagues get vaccinated. Also provided was a shuttle service from the resort to the vaccination sites for team members, and allowing them to get vaccinated during work hours.

Pregnant staff were offered hotel limousine service from their home within a reasonable radius to the vaccination center and back.

The resort’s in-house occupational health and safety unit kept track of the staff’s vaccination status, and helped them make appointments through available channels. Off-site colleagues were also urged early on to get vaccinated in their respective communities where available.

Now that’s a good model for other companies to follow.

—Daxim L. Lucas
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TAGS: Biz Buzz, City of Dreams Manila, Converge ICT Solutions Inc., Sun Life Asset Management
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