Official Publication of the Philippine Information Agency Bicol Regional Office, in cooperation with the RIAC-REDIRAS - RDC Bicol

Monday, June 13, 2016

DTI-5 to MSMEs: “Dream Big!”

By Julius Embile

LEGAZPI CITY, June 13 (PIA) – “Dream big!” was the rallying call of the Department of Trade and Industry-Bicol Region (DTI-5) for the up-start entrepreneurs attending the Bicol Food Conference, held yesterday at Legazpi City,

Themed: “Promoting the Taste of Bicolandia”, the said conference was organized by DTI-5’s Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Development Commission in order to empower existing and potential micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) owners by sharing business knowledge and inspiration.

During the gathering, successful entrepreneurs who were once humble MSME owners rose to the occasion as keynote speakers. One of these speakers is Eufracio Ocampo, owner of the famous pasalubong-business “Sitsirya Sari-Sari”.

Firing-up the determination of the newbie business-folks in attendance, Ocampo shared his story on how he elevated his business from lowly beginnings to the thriving status it has today. In 1983, Ocampo and his wife found themselves jobless, but fears working abroad as it may tear their family apart. As a solution, the couple started a confectionary business with a meager Php 10,000.

The product that the Ocampos sold was an array of traditional delicacies from different regions of the country. Ingeniously packaged as great choice for gifts or giveaways, their products drew appeal from a wide and diverse market like tourists and OFWs.

Through hard work, the business grew in succeeding years. As of June 2015, “Sitsirya Sari-Sari” has a total of 17 company-owned outlets across the country, prompting the business towards franchising.

“We (DTI) have always encouraged them (the MSMEs) to dream big. We want them to prosper, not only in Bicol, but throughout the country, until they are ready to export”, said DTI-5 regional director Jocelyn Blanco.

Encouraging the Bicolano MSMEs to prosper as Ocampo did, DTI-5 has continuously promoted food business ventures across the region since 2007 through their Business Development Program.

Throughout the years, the program expanded from a handful of MSME beneficiaries to a large organization, devoted to the development of the food manufacture industry in Bicol. Surprised by how positive the region’s food industry stands, DTI-5 was commended by Undersecretary Zenaida T. Maglaya of DTI’s Regional Operations Group.

“I did not expect that Bicol has a food industry and community as large and interactive as this.” said Maglaya, who was also a guest of the Bicol Food Conference. (MAL/JBE/PIA5)

- See more at: http://news.pia.gov.ph/article/view/3301465542028/dti-5-to-msmes-dream-big-#sthash.UlGmnHdH.dpuf

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