Women Entrepreneurs Taking the Lead in the Face of a Pandemic

Rose Abes, CEO and President of RCA Corporation, Co-owner and General Manager of Palas Resort in Nueva Ecija, and a life coach joins the fifth #GlobalDominionOnline discussion with Jaz Ortencio, Owner and maker of PaquitosPH and a unit manager of a well-known life insurance company in the Philippines.

The group reminisced about the birth of 2020 when everyone was hopeful for ‘the year of clarity’, “2020” (from 20/20 vision). Palas, being a spot known for team building activities and family adventures, was expecting a grand 2020 summer. Their team prepared for new things for their guests and they even set higher sales targets for the year. They, just like many of us in early 2020 days, thought that Covid-19 shall soon fade and will leave summer unscathed. Of course, we know that’s not what happened.

Jaz’s story is different. Her salsa business grew even bigger during the pandemic. Her business started with producing salsa for many resellers prior to the lockdowns. But the impact of the pandemic affected many resellers and Jaz was forced to do forward integration and open her business to more consumers and not just resellers. Technology and innovation in logistics helped her sail even farther, making her reach more people in the process. This led to her business actually growing bigger. She also got a promotion from her associate unit manager role to her current role as a unit manager in the life insurance company she is part of.

“After a month, parang, okay, what’s next?” Rose asked herself while in lockdown. She admitted feeling fear of the unknown. But that didn’t stop her from gearing herself up mentally and emotionally. She started reading and attending online classes which were rampant then and until now. Both women had their take of proper perspectives and tried to find the beauty behind it all. And though fear was ultimately present, faith has been there to help both of them to move forward – it clearly paved the way! In many ways, it was the market which adjusted to the situation, and online platforms became more popular for business fulfillment. “Madaming pwedeng gawin sa bahay na pwede kang magkaroon ng income,” Jaz uttered while sharing how keen she is to let everyone know that you just have to find where your heart is and create a product to perfection. She has also underscored the importance of feedback when it comes to managing businesses either offline or online. “Hindi kailangan magmadali yung basta makabenta, yung quality dapat nandun pa rin!” Jaz added.

“Madugo” was how the finance was described by Rose, as their resort had to still cover for maintenance fees and payroll in the beginning of the pandemic. One of her employees uttered “Kaya natin ‘to!” in the middle of their early struggles to manage their finances and find alternative sources of income while on lockdown.

Jaz started her salsa business with only ten thousand pesos cash. The said amount was enough for her to launch the business yet not too big to affect their family’s consumption budget. The entrepreneur topped her capital investment with “passion” and “love”. She also emphasized the importance of “focus” to ensure the quality of your product. For this she says she manages her time well toggling between her food business and life insurance venture.

One of the things both women entrepreneurs considered to further support their businesses amidst the pandemic was a loan or financing product. In the case of the resort, maintenance and relaunching are cash-heavy, so as expansion and farther penetration for the food business’ side.

Watch the entire #GlobalDominionOnline interview here.

PaquitosPH salsa can be availed via Facebook, Shopee, and Lazada.

Jaz Ortencio and Cardinal Buoy Financials can also be contacted for life insurance products.

Palasresort.com can be visited online for more information about their resort in Nueva Ecija.

Fresh Choice products’ Facebook page would be your perfect destination for your meats and wine needs.

For your loan needs, there’s no need to go anywhere else but here.

For questions or feedback to this write up and interview, please email aoguanzon@gdfi.com.ph.