RVR Awards: Building a business constituency for good | Inquirer Opinion
Business Matters

RVR Awards: Building a business constituency for good

For all the aspiring entrepreneurs, I highly encourage you to chase your dreams. And when you achieve your dreams, to dream even bigger. As I earlier said, the only limitations are those we place on ourselves. Believe in yourselves.”

This was just one of Dr. Tony Tan Caktiong’s gems of wisdom from his remarks at the 2022 Ramon V. del Rosario Award for Nation Building (RVR Awards) event night held last July 25, 2022. He was this year’s awardee as we resumed the program after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

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In his award presentation remarks, the honorable former chief justice Artemio Panganiban, who chaired the board of judges for this 11th RVR Awards once again, called Dr. Tony Tan Caktiong a truly world-class Filipino entrepreneur, citing the phenomenal success of Jollibee Foods Corp. (JFC). He said, “Started in 1978 by our Awardee and his amiable and equally hardworking wife, Grace, as a single mom-and-pop store selling the now iconic Chickenjoy, JFC has grown exponentially with close to 6,000 stores as of today, and with 13 international brands sold in 34 countries.” He also noted that Dr. Tan Caktiong and his wife “organized and heads the Jollibee Group Foundation that encourages, assists, and funds farmers and poultry raisers to produce consistently high-quality products that JFC and its subsidiaries purchase directly, thereby assuring a reasonable mark-up for the producers and high-quality ingredients for his customers.”

Resuming the RVR Awards night, timed on the birthday of my father every 25th of July, is to my mind a contribution to support our nation and our people in these still trying times. We decided to honor a nation-builder this year precisely because of the challenges we continue to face as a nation in a world that is not in a good place. We need inspiration. We need leaders. We need more light, especially for our young professionals and entrepreneurs. We have to amplify the message that we can and shall overcome.

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At PHINMA, we have always pursued our mission of making lives better by providing families and communities better access to the essentials of a dignified life. All our businesses pursue this mission with a passion and through the commitment of our leaders and team members. But we know we cannot do it all single-handedly. No one organization can make a difference in our developing nation unless there are other willing partners—delivering services, sharing resources, building the economy, and pioneering the breakthroughs this country needs. The RVR Awards that we do in partnership with Junior Chamber International Manila and AIM’s RVR Center for Corporate Social Responsibility focus the spotlight on individuals and their organizations that share this vision of enabling people to access the resources they need to get to the good life.

In honoring outstanding nation-builders, we are helping build a business constituency for good. We do not see this as just another recognition ceremony, but rather, a recommitment event, as well as a continuing clarion call to make business a genuine force for good! I am confident that Dr. Tony will join his fellow awardees, including Ambassador Jesus Tambunting, Senen Bacani, Oscar Lopez, Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Manuel V. Pangilinan, Diosdado Banatao, and Dr. Aris Alip, in multiplying this force. He will inspire our youth just as well as Washington SyCip, Vicente T. Paterno, Henry Sy Sr., and Dr. George S. K. Ty have—past awardees who have journeyed beyond ahead of us.

And finally, as I have said in the past, if this RVR Awards has gained recognition and prestige through the years, it is surely due to the outstanding work and qualities of the awardees who have received this award! And this year’s awardee, Dr. Tony Tan Caktiong, is certainly no exception: By accepting this award, our awardee further enhances the RVR Awards, and he truly honors Ambassador Ramon V. del Rosario and his legacy of making lives better. For this, we thank him profusely.

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Ramon R. del Rosario Jr. is chair and CEO of PHINMA and former chair of Makati Business Club.

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Business Matters is a project of the Makati Business Club ([email protected]).

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