5 fintech start-ups qualify for investment under
    ING-UNICEF ‘Fintech for Impact’

    Five start-ups that are building financial technology (fintech) solutions have been chosen to receive equity-free investments, as well as technical and business mentorship, for one year under the ‘Fintech for Impact’ initiative of ING Bank and UN children’s agency UNICEF.

    The global initiative, launched in the Philippines last year, seeks to support start-ups developing digital solutions that aim to empower young people, children and families.

    The five start-ups selected are: Agrabah, a digital platform connecting farmers and fisherfolk directly to buyers and loans, providing them greater autonomy, and their families improved financial resiliency; BeamAndGo, a remittance-based platform to help migrant workers (including overseas Filipino workers) and their families better manage their finances and make responsible spending decisions for the household; Educ4All: InvestEd, which connects students to educational loans, and will be producing a set of financial education and transition-to-adulthood courses that will guide graduates into meaningful employment and financial stability; Reach52, a set of apps that provide affordable microinsurance, healthcare and health products to rural communities, as well as livelihood opportunities, to local women; and Saphron, which seeks to empower grassroots microinsurance agents to collect accurate, efficient data with a powerful new AI-enabled platform.

    All investments are in open source technology and content, to allow the tools to be adapted and re-used in other contexts.

    New digital financial tools need to be designed responsibly to address the specific needs of young people, children, and families, to help build economic security, encourage more equitable access to services and lift the financial barriers to opportunities for improving their lives.

    The investment supports open source solutions that contribute to a growing body of digital public goods that can advance society.

    Lopez Group’s Federico Lopez is MAP Management Man of the Year 2020

    The Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) announced recently the selection of Federico “Piki” Lopez,  chair and chief executive officer of First Philippine Holdings Corp., as the recipient of the “MAP Management Man of the Year 2020” award.

    The award is bestowed on individuals in the business community or government for attaining unquestioned distinction in the practice of management and for contributing to the country’s progress. The conferment of the award follows a thorough, stringent selection process.  The distinction of “MAP Management Man of the Year” has only been conferred 44 times in the five-decade history of the award.

    The criteria for the award include integrity, leadership, and management qualities; contribution to nation-building and values formation; effective stewardship within the confines of the highest standard of business and management practice; among others.

    Toyota PH, Denso TH donate air purifiers

    Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) has recently turned over to Philippine General Hospital (PGH) 20 units of air purifiers donated by Denso Thailand. These portable devices called Denso Plasmacluster Ion Generator supress and remove airborne viruses, molds, and allergens in small spaces with limited air circulation, making them ideal for use in some of the state hospital’s rooms, and inside the cars and shuttles being used by its healthcare workers.

    The air purifiers were previously tried and tested with the free shuttle transportation service extended by TMP and the Toyota Mobility Foundation (TMF) to PGH staff at the height of the lockdowns due to COVID-19. PGH was also one of the recipients of the Vios units donated by TMP to the Department of Health (DOH) and other government and LGU-run hospitals to help augment mobility support for the healthcare sector.

    Globe wins Asia’s Best CEO, CFO, CSR

    Globe CEO Ernest Cu is Asia’s Best CEO, and Rizza Maniego-Eala is Asia’s Best CFO (Investor Relations) at the Corporate Governance Asia Awards’ 10th Asia Excellence, with the theme, “Communicating through the Fog of Uncertainty: The story of the Asian Corporation response during the pandemic.”

    Globe is likewise named Asia’s Best CSR, Best Investor Relations Company (Philippines) and Best Investor Relations Professional (Philippines, Jose Mari Fajardo) at the 2020 Asian Excellence Award which recognizes environmental, ethics, sustainability, social and Asian values of corporate governance.

    Globe released over P1.3 billion in combined services and assistance packages for COVID-19, consisting of support for Globe employees and vendor partners, services and promos, external fund-raising efforts, and monetary and in-kind donations. The award also commended the impressive scale and speed of Globe’s shift to work-from-home adaptability as well as its arrangements to safeguard the health of its employees.

    MVP Group equips frontliners and communities, promotes e-learning amid pandemic

    Hospitals, frontline workers, communities, and families continue to receive support and assistance from the Tulong Kapatid, the corporate social responsibility (CSR) consortium of the companies under the leadership of Manuel V Pangilinan.

    Tulong Kapatid continues to ramp up its digital education efforts to help schools and communities ensure that no learner is left behind.

    PLDT recently launched a webinar series to the women of three upland communities in Arakan, North Cotabato. The initiative aims to promote gender equality and equip the Arakan women with skills to access and use digital technology.

    PLDT, through its Infoteach Outreach Program, also conducted a webinar series called “Gearing up for the New Normal in Teaching and Learning.”   Smart Communications Inc. is working with the Central Visayan Institute Foundation (CVIF) to ensure that the teaching and learning process continues despite the pandemic through the CVIF-Dynamic Learning Program, a crisis-resilient independent learning strategy that applies to any or a combination of DepEd modalities – online, modular, TV, and radio.

    Smart also recently kicked off #CyberSmart – an online cyber security and internet safety caravan supported by the National Privacy Commission, that aims to educate students and teachers all over the country on how to protect their digital life.

    The PLDT-Smart Foundation  and Smart enabled the students of Quezon City Science High School  by providing them with quality e-learning opportunities.

    The One Meralco Foundation (OMF) also completed its solar electrification of seven off-grid island schools in Samar and is currently installing 1-kilowatt solar PV systems in seven more schools in Masbate.

    AllHome opens 47th store

    AllHome Corp. has opened its 47th branch,  located in Evia.

    With a total floor area of almost 2,500 square meters, the newest AllHome Builder’s Centre houses a wide selection of new and contemporary tile designs, modern sanitary wares, hardware items and comprehensive building material offerings.

    AllHome Builder’s Centre aims to make material-sourcing much more convenient and less time-consuming for builders and contractors. This store is designed to provide the no-frills shopping experience preferred by busy builders.

    The Builder’s Centre is located at Evia Lifestyle Center in Alabang.

    Converge ICT expands Customer Experience Operations

    Converge ICT Solutions Inc. has augmented its customer service staff with the addition of new hires, as well as  outsourced agents, in Pasig, Manila, Clark and Dau sites, almost doubling its total headcount from March to end of the third quarter.

    The company has also increased its overall hotline capacity to match the additional staffing to address customer inquiries and follow-ups.

    The company has improved its overall voice support performance resulting in a significant decline in dropped calls and reduced waiting time for customers calling the hotlines.

    This move aims to address year-end targets including responding within 24-hours for the non-voice channels of Converge ICT’s call center operations.

    The company has recently launched a mobile app, Converge Xperience, which aims to enable subscribers to seek solutions for service-related concerns without the need to talk to a customer service agent. Aside from the app, the company has also launched its own YouTube channel that features self-help videos to help educate their market in improving their internet experience.

    SNAP tops list of compliant hydros

    SN Aboitiz Power (SNAP) Group’s Ambuklao, Binga, and Magat hydroelectric power plants received top recognition as compliant hydro generators during the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) Compliance Officer Summit held on Sept. 25, 2020.

    Ambuklao hydro topped among twelve participating hydro-power generators all over the country with a compliance rating of 95.55 percent for the period 26 June 2019 to 25 June 2020. Binga and Magat hydros were placed second and fourth, respectively, with 92.60  percent and 83.45 percent.

    This is SNAP’s third citation this year from PEMC, as it also topped PEMC’s compliance ratings in April for the cool-dry season covering the period December  2019 to  February 2020 and in July for the hot-dry season covering the period February to  May 2020.


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