NET25 show ‘Open for Business’ holds first awards ceremony

RAZZLE-DAZA - Pat-P Daza - The Philippine Star
NET25 show �Open for Business� holds first awards ceremony
NET25 president and host of ‘Open for Business’ Caesar Vallejos and TV production head consultant Wilma Galvante.

Last Thursday, Jan. 25,

I was invited to be a presenter for the first-ever NET25 Open for Business Trailblazers Awards held at the EVM Convention Center in Quezon City.

“Open for Business (OFB)” is a program produced and aired on NET25 that is hosted by the network’s president, Caesar R. Vallejos (CRV).

Korina Sanchez-Roxas of ‘Korina Interviews.’

Its format is very basic, and shows CRV interviewing either a budding entrepreneur or a highly successful one. It provides inspiration and shares insightful ideas, analyses and lessons from leaders, CEOs and industry experts from various industries. “OFB” has been a source of inspiration for the resilient entrepreneurial community, especially our “kababayans” from micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME’s) and those who struggled during the pandemic.

Ara Mina of ‘Magandang ARAw.’

The awards night was a celebration of entrepreneurial drive, innovation and excellence in the business world. In his speech, CRV recalled that “OFB” was launched at the height of the pandemic in 2020, and that at one point, he even had COVID-19 while conducting an interview via Zoom.

Daiana Menezes of ‘Kada Umaga.’

The awards night was a well-attended affair, with micro-CEOs, captains of huge corporations, and everyone in between present. I spotted Cielo Villaluna, spokesperson of Philippine Airlines (PAL); George Garcia, chairman of COMELEC; RJ Ledesma of Mercato Centrale; and Capt. Stanley Ng, president of PAL.

Wej Cudiamat of ‘Mata ng Aguila sa Tanghali.’

Many NET25 stars came in full force to support the inaugural event. At my table were Korina Sanchez-Roxas (“Korina Interviews”), who was wearing dark glasses after her lasik eye surgery) and Ara Mina (“Magandang ARAw”), who were exchanging schedules for an out-of-town shoot to feature Korina diving on “Magandang ARAw.” Senator Robin Padilla and wife Mariel Rodriguez were also seated at our table and were lovey-dovey all night. Eric Quizon, star builder of NET25’s StarKada talent arm and the just-launched sitcom “3 in 1,” with Diamond Star Maricel Soriano was also present.

Love Añover of ‘Love Tonipet and Everythaaang.’

“Kada Umaga” hosts Pia Guanio Mago, Diana Menezes and Emma Tiglao were nearby with Goodwill’s Dave Chua and Regine Angeles. My “ASPN” co-anchor Ali Sotto, “Love and Everythaaang” host Love Añover, also attended with NET25 head consultant for TV production Wilma Galvante.

Brian Poe Llamanzares, author of A Sustainable Future, is Green Policy awardee.

News anchor Alex Santos of “Mata ng Aguila” delivered a primetime newscast live from the EVM Convention Center with Rikki Mathay and Nina Alagao. “Mata ng Aguila sa Tanghali” anchors Wej Cudiamat and Gianna Llanes were also there, with Gianna hosting the awards night together with Tonypet Gaba.

Alex Santos of ‘Mata ng Aguila Primetime’ and Nina Alagao of ‘Mata ng Aguila International.’

Among the awardees was Capt. Stanley Ng, who received the Exemplary Values in Management Award in the airline industry. The seven recipients of the Innovation Award were the very popular ride-hailing app Angkas (George Royeca), Puregold Supermarkets (Ferdinand Vincent Co), Zoomanity Group (Robert Yupangco), Great Wall Motors (Tonette Lee), KCO Kangkong Chips Original (Josh Mojica), Villa Medica, and Glutamax.

Senator Robinhood ‘Robin’ Padilla with lovely wife Mariel Rodriguez-Padilla.

“Franchise Companies of the Year” were awarded to Shawarma Shack (represented by its founder Walther Uzi Buenavista) and Mister Donut, while the Green Policy Award was awarded to Brian Poe Llamanzares (author of A Sustainable Future), Dr. Elton See Tan of the E-Hotels Group, and San Miguel Global Power Holdings.

Eric Quizon, star builder of NET25’s talent arm StarKada.

The first ever Open for Business Trailblazers Awards Night was indeed a trailblazing success. Long after the final award was handed out, people lingered to continue networking.

Capt. Stanley Ng, president of Philippine Airlines, is recipient of Exemplary Values in Management Award in the airline industry.

I also overheard what sounded like planned collaborations and co-ventures by businessmen who had just met each other that night. To quote and paraphrase CRV’s opening remarks, may the success stories of “those whose achievements leave us in awe and shape the very landscape of our business world” inspire others to uplift our country as well.

COMELEC chairman George Garcia is recipient of the Exemplary Values in Management Award.

Long live the entrepreneurial and innovative spirit of the Filipino!

Catch “Open for Business” every Sunday at 9 p.m. on NET25.

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