This coming September 29, the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. will host the Visayas Area Business Conference to be held in Waterfront Cebu city Hotel and Casino with the theme, “Connecting Ideas. Connecting Economies”
This conference is the annual gathering of all the members of the chambers of commerce of the different islands in the Visayas Region of the Philippines, i.e. from Eastern Visayas (namely, Eastern Samar, Leyte, Ormoc, Palompon, Greater Calbayog, Baybay, Samar and Southern Leyte), Central Visayas (Bohol, Consolacion, Mandaue and Siquijor, Cebu and its Chapters in Danao City, Naga City and Bantayan Island,) and Western Visayas Antique, Aklan, Boracay, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo) and NIR (Negros Oriental, Metro Bacolod).
With over four hundred prominent businessmen and entrepreneurs in Cebu and in the Visayas including small and medium scale enterprises, the conference does not only address the most significant and current issues on real estate development, BPO and ICT and in the service industries such as retail and tourism but also highlights the opportunities and challenges that come with fast paced economy in the region in general and the need to connect our economies to gain competitive edge.
Conference delegates will benefit from first-hand knowledge and diverse perspectives of internationally-renowned speakers & business leaders who are featured throughout the event’s day programme.
With the theme all about connectivity, VABC 2017, the brainchild of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) and hosted this year by the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI), brings an excellent set of resource speakers to add to your business knowledge and inspire ideas for a more connected future.
AMBASSADOR GREGORY W. SLAYTON is a career diplomat, having served as Ambassador to Bermuda under Presidents Bush and Obama. He is the only Republican in history to be honored with the distinguished Foreign Service Award by the Congressional Black Caucus, a rare and prestigious moment in recognition of his diplomatic work in Bermuda.
He was also featured on the cover of TIME Magazine for his achievements. His relevance to the current tech climate cannot be understated as he has served on boards of Google and Salesforce.com and is a successful CEO of four Silicon Valley companies. His diverse work experience also includes being an executive at McKinsey & Co. and Paramount Studios. He is Managing Director of Slayton Capital.
Ambassador Slayton is also an author. He co-wrote with his wife Marina an important book that is the definitive overview of US-Bermuda relations.
An honors graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Business School. He earned a Masters Degree in Asian Studies as a Fulbright Scholar. Today he is a distinguished lecturer at Harvard, Stanford, Dartmouth and Beida (Peking University). He is also Chairman of the Fellowship of Fathers Foundation.
Most importantly, he has been married for 25 years and is father to four children, two of whom are also Ivy League graduates.
As one of VABC 2017’s featured speakers, Ambassador Slayton carries with him a lifetime of excellence in the academe, diplomatic experience matched by only a few, business and investing wisdom and success in new technological fields.
CECILIO K. PEDRO is the CEO and President of Lamoiyan Corporation, a company with 25 years of manufacturing success. Makers of household names and brands that have been endeared to Filipinos for decades, the company has demonstrated remarkable resilience to emerge as a leader in its sector.
Mr. Pedro has received many accolades in business. Among these are:
- TOYM Awardee for Business Entrepreneurship
- Aurelio Periquet Award for Business Leadership
- Apolinario Mabini Awardee for Employer of the Year
- Entrepreneur of the Year for Social Responsibility (SGV award)
- CEO Excel Awardee
- Grand MVP Bossing (PLDT SME Nation + GoNegosyo Awardee)
He is also the Vice President of the Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. and a Board Member of PNB. Other socio-civic involvements include: Board Member of Philippine Business for Social Progress; Chairman-elect of Ateneo Scholarship Foundation; Board Member of Ten Outstanding Young Men Foundation; Chairman of the Deaf Evangelistic Alliance Foundation.
He considers Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as part of the lifeblood of his company culture. Today Lamoiyan employs hearing-impaired workers, who make up roughly 30 percent of its workforce and are receiving equal opportunities and benefits.
A man who has a great entrepreneurial story to tell, Mr. Pedro is one of the self-made heroes of Philippine business who can inspire many and teach us ways of connecting with people.
CHESTER COKALIONG exemplifies the idea of connectivity through the shipping sector. He is the founder, CEO and COO of Cokaliong Shipping Lines, a leader in the Philippine shipping industry and invaluable contributor to maritime transport.
The Philippines, being highly dependent on shipping for inter-island connections and transport of goods, his company has served a vital role in linking our islands and businesses together.
A multi-awarded businessman, he has earned the following distinctions:
- Ten Outstanding Cebuano Award (TOCA) Recipient
- CCCI Entrepreneur of the Year
- Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Philippines Finalist
- Garbo sa Sugbo Awardee for Outstanding Contribution in Entrepreneurship
Other ventures include textiles, garments and the hotel industry. His family owns Chester Enterprises, Inc. and Bayfront Hotel in Cebu.
Under his stewardship, Cokaliong Shipping Lines has garnered many accolades from both government and the private sector as a well-managed company. Mr. Cokaliong, who has shown heroic support of the community and dedication and passion towards his industry, has been lauded for his volunteer efforts.
He is sure to provide valuable insight into how transport and shipping businesses contribute to increased connections and robust economies.
JOSE MA. A. CONCEPCION III is a name known to most Filipinos, as he is one of the country’s leading business figures.
He is currently the Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship; the Chairman of the Asian Business Advisory Council; Founder of the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (GoNegosyo) and President and CEO of RFM Corporation, a giant in the food and beverage industry.
His efforts in entrepreneurship promotion through GoNegosyo have made a significant impact in the lives of many aspiring entrepreneurs. He believes that empowerment, motivation and entrepreneurial education are the lasting solutions to poverty.
Among his many awards are: Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines (1995); Time Global List of Young Leaders of the Millennium; the Anvil Award of Excellence for Advocacy by the Public Relations Society of the Philippines and the CEO Excel Award by the International Association of Business Communications. He was also hailed by Forbes Asia as one of the 48 Heroes of Philanthropy (2011).
As Consultant to the President of the Philippines on Entrepreneurship, Mr. Concepcion plays a vital advisory role in synergizing the entrepreneurship thrusts of the country.
In the Visayas Area Business Conference, Mr. Concepcion is set to provide remarkable perspective on the role of entrepreneurship in nation-building, and the importance of connectivity of ideas in the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
HON. JUAN MIGUEL F. ZUBIRI is a veteran legislator at a young age. He chairs the Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce and Entrepreneurship and the Committee on Cooperatives in the current 17th Congress.
As Senate Majority Leader in the 14th Congress, Sen Zubiri helped steer the Senate to achieve the remarkable accomplishment of enacting 650 bills into law. As a legislator, Senator Zubiri authored and sponsored more than 20 major laws.
Sen. Zubiri, being the chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce and Entrepreneurship, advocates for the success of the micro, small and medium enterprises by providing them a conducive business environment, ease in doing their businesses and government assistance through shared-services facilities and loan facilities. He is also advocating for better consumer protection through the enactment of laws such as no expiration of gift checks, no expiration of call cards and prepaid load of telecommunication networks, and the air passenger’s bill of rights among others.
He holds a Master of Environment and Natural Resources Management (MENRM) degree from the University of the Philippines, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Agri-Business Management from UP Los Baños.
He is a recipient of the Presidential Award, the highest award being given by the UPLB Alumni Association to UPLB alumni. He has been conferred four Honoris Causa Doctoral degrees by several private and state universities.
The Senator provides important political insight and tackles the efforts made by government to improve Ease of Doing Business in the country. During the VABC 2017, Senator Zubiri will discuss the role of legislation in the improvement of business and investment climate in the country.