[August 7, 2018] In 2020, emerging markets globally will have an expanded middle-class segment of close to 2 billion people – a powerful source of world GDP which also provides well-established and young businesses new market opportunities.
At a roundtable discussion at Trump Tower Philippines in Makati – the largest gathering to date of Filipino business leaders who attended the Harvard Business School Owners and Presidents Management Program (OPM) – lead speaker, Harvard OPM alumni and Century Properties Chairman Jose E.B. Antonio stressed that Philippine businesses should take advantage of the tremendous growth of the middle class locally and overseas.
Antonio emphasized that Philippine businesses must address the needs of the country’s new middle class, especially in the areas of real еstatе, agriculture and tourism. “The middle-class market is growing because of OFW remittances and the increase in people’s purchasing power. This set of new customers is now dictating the direction of the bulk of spending in real еstatе,” he said.
The former stockbroker who founded Century Properties with five employees in 1986, seven days before the People Power Revolution, also mentored the younger OPM alumni by sharing Century’s six core business philosophies. He underscored the values of focusing on the customer, delivering a lights-out customer experience, execution with a moonshot mindset, building for quality, adapting industry best practices, and combining skills and knowledge with wisdom and experience.
Antonio’s son Marco R. Antonio, currently chief operating officer at Century Properties, also shared insights with the OPM alumni on how the company has worked effectively with global brands such as Trump, Versace Home, MissoniHome, Armani Casa, yoo inspired by Starck, and Paris Hilton among others, to enhance the value of its projects and attract different market niches.
The Harvard OPM alumni roundtable is held throughout the year to share valuable business insights and network with seasoned and young entrepreneurs. Harvard Business School alumna OPM Pinky Tobiano Robles of Qualibet Testing Services Corporation and alumni president Rajan Uttamchandani moderated the discussion.
Jose Antonio has built the company from the ground up, staring with real еstatе marketing and property management, and eventually going into real еstatе development. The company was listed in the local bourse in the year 2012 and has since completed 18 residential condominium buildings, consisting of 10,890 units; a retail commercial building; and a medical office building. This is in addition to the 19 buildings with 4,128 units that were completed prior to 2010 by the founding principals’ prior development companies.
From its high-rise developments, Century has ventured into affordable horizontal housing last year in response to the continued economic growth, the growing middle class, and housing backlog in the country. It launched PHirst Park Homes with Mitsubishi Corporation to cater to the needs of the first homebuyer market.
In December last year, the company also announced its foray into leisure and tourism through Batulao Artscapes in Batulao, Batangas. Envisioned as THE WORLD’S FIRST LIVABLE ART PARK, it will be a tourist destination for both locals and foreigners – the 142-hectare site will include designer vacation homes, a hotel, museums, and sports and leisure facilities, among others. #
GROUP PHOTO: The Harvard Business School Owners and Presidents Management Program Philippine Alumni
SEATED: (From Left) Vic Valledor (Lockton Companies), Alvin Yu (Narra Capital Investment Corporation, Bacolod DN Triumph Steel Corporation and Bacolod Twinstar Shipping Corporation), Ray Reyes, Martin Yu, Pinky Tobiano (Qualibet Testing Services Corp.), Rajan Uttamchandani (Esquire Financing Inc.), Jose Antonio (Chairman and CEO, Century Properties Group), Robb Delgado, Jasen Ko, Quinto Oreta (Major Homes, Inc.), Jennilyn Uy (Waltermart)
STANDING: William Chua, Glen Cu, Dino Araneta (LBC), Enrique Gonzales (MVP Global), Mikel Antunez (Automated Technologies Incorporated), Danny Ibasco (Fortman Cline), William Tiu Lim (CEO, Mega Sardines), Roswell Limsui (Love Feeds), Juancho Robles (CEO, Chan Robles and Company), Ken Jeswani (Beaute and Scente), Vicente Co (Philippine Plastics Industry), and Jiten Lalwani (Four Eyes)
Rajan Uttamchandani (Esquire Financing Inc.) and Pinky Tobiano Robles (Qualibet Testing Services) award Jose Antonio (Chairman and CEO, Century Properties Group) a plaque of appreciation for serving as the featured speaker Harvard Business School Owners and Presidents Management Program Philippine Alumni roundtable discussion on August 7, 2018