Filipino micro-entrepreneurs cited for innovative business practices

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By Alexander Villafania

MANILA CITY, METRO MANILA – Cited for their innovative business strategies as well as impact in their respective communities, eight micro-entrepreneurs from different parts of the Philippines won in the recent Microentrepreneur of the Year Awards (MOTY).

The eight winners will be sharing P1 million in cash prize.

The MOTY, organized by the Citi Foundation, recognizes entrepreneurs who have assets of less than P1 million but have shown laudable strides in growing their business. These are businesses that have generated employment, high profits, and other performance indicators.

Among the winners were chicken lumpia seller Carina Gonato from Cebu, ready-to-wear seller Corazon Bautista from Rizal province, tuna packaging materials provider Andresa Javines from General Santos, seaweed farmer Anastacio Postero also from Cebu, footwear manufacturer Jocelyn de Guzman from Nueva Ecija, herbal oils manufacturer Danelito Castro from Zamboanga, dried fish processor Natividad Gabriel from Palawan and vehicles-for-hire businessman John Cabillon from Iloilo.

MOTY has two categories, namely the “Masikap Award” given to entrepreneurs who have put up their business and are now providing reliable income for their family members, and the “Maunlad Award” is given to business entities that are also providing income to other, non-family members.

The Masikap Awardees include Bautista, de Guzman, Postrero, and Castro while the Maunlad Award was given to Gonato, Gabriel, Cabillon, and Javines.

In addition, Gonato and Bautista were awarded the MOTY National Winners for their efforts in their respective categories.

The winners in both categories would get 100,000 each while the national winners will get P200,000 each. In addition, this year’s winners will include a three-year health and life insurance coverage and a grant to take entrepreneurship management in Bayan Academy.

Citi Country Officer Sanjiv Vohra said that this year’s MOTY has seen the most number of nominees since it started in 2002. At least 140 micro-entrepreneurs were nominated by at least 40 institutions to be part of the awards.

“This year’s batch of Citi MOTY awardees is a testament to the winning formula of hard work, ingenuity, and microfinancing,” said Vohra.

“Like the winners, thousands of Filipinos have been able to seize unusual opportunities through microfinance. With the proper funding, these micro-entrepreneurs have set up thriving businesses that have changed their lives for the better while positively impacting the economy as a whole.”

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