Sunday, December 31, 2023


With their yearly ChriSMiles project, SM City Grand Central, SM Center Sangandaan, and SM City Valenzuela brought the year to a close. ChriSMiles is an employee volunteer program run by the Human Resources Department of each mall, intending to make children happy and bring holiday cheer to the community.

In Caloocan, children from Tahanang Mapagkalinga Social Development Center were overjoyed as volunteers from SM City Grand Central and SM Center Sangandaan gave love and heartwarming surprises. SM City Grand Central became a hub of joy as the young ones were treated to a day filled with surprises, including a tour around SM City Grand Central, a hearty meal from Jollibee, engaging games from Tom's World, Quantum, and Jack Adventure, and entertaining movies from SM Cinema.

Expressing gratitude on behalf of the Caloocan City Government, City Social Welfare Officer Regina Embalsado conveyed her heartfelt thanks to SM, emphasizing the importance of the ChriSMiles project for abandoned, neglected, and abused children. " We are very grateful po dahil may magagandang puso na yumayakap sa mga bata. Taos puso po ang pasasalamat namin sa inyo," she remarked.

Meanwhile, the employees of SM City Valenzuela brought joy to the children at Bahay Kalinga ng Valenzuela. Laughter echoed through the air as the youngsters were treated to gifts, entertainment, and a year-end party, creating lasting memories for everyone involved.

SM City Grand Central, SM Center Sangandaan, and SM City Valenzuela go beyond their roles as shopping destinations, evolving into hubs of community spirit and generosity. Fueled by the dedication of each mall and its employees, the ChriSMiles project embodies the true essence of the holiday season. It also serves as a testament to the transformative power of collective efforts, making a positive impact on the lives of those in need.

SM ChriSMiles was made possible through the initiative of the malls and their employees. Each SM employee contributed generously, both in time and resources, to raise a substantial amount of money for the holiday celebrations of less fortunate children.

Friday, December 29, 2023

Moving Forward to a Cleaner, Lighter 2024

More than 10 boxes of clothes, shoes, books, toys, and even household items were collected from Converge employees over a month when Segunda Mana boxes were deployed to three Converge offices. 

Converge partners with Caritas Manila for Segunda Mana donations in-kind program

The first rule of mountain climbing, as hikers and climbers will tell you, is to travel light. You can climb the steep slope and dodge obstacles faster when you have less luggage to slow you down. Similar to this, we should have a "go light" mentality and let go of the things that stand in our way as we get ready to climb the mountain that is 2024 and overcome the rocks and slopes along the way.

Converge ICT Solutions Inc. is participating in Caritas Manila's extensive in-kind donations program, Segunda Mana, in the spirit of literally and metaphorically lightening our burdens while also sharing our blessings with those in need.

All offices of Converge, from Facilities to Executive Offices pitched in for the charitable organization’s far-reaching Segunda Mana program, which will benefit scholars and entrepreneurs nationwide.

Caritas Manila receives second-hand clothes, gadgets, furniture, and books which are sent to their Charity outlets to be sold and converted to cash. These benefit over 5000 voc/tech and college scholars nationwide and support the livelihood of over 300 micro-entrepreneurs and their families from the informal sector.

“At Converge, we are committed to creating a positive impact in the communities that we serve and this partnership with Caritas Manila supports that mission, especially for those who are most in need. We are thankful to Caritas Manila for allowing us to take part in their Segunda Mana donations in-kind program and evoke compassion and kindness among our ranks during this blessed season and as we prepare to welcome the new year,” said Converge Vice President and Head of Corporate Communications and Public Relations Jay-Anne Encarnado.

If you still need convincing to participate in this benevolent cause, here are four reasons to declutter your home this New Year:

1. A cleaner space is good for your mental health

“Clearing the clutter in your physical space is similar to decluttering your mind. By simplifying our surroundings, we create space for clarity, peace, and focus. This process also allows us to contemplate what is truly important, what can be shared, and what must be let go of,” notes Ree Bringuelo, Converge Employee Health and Wellness Manager.

2. It encourages the spirit of giving within the family and community

“When the lockdown happened in 2020, there were several kind people who gave home-schooling books, toys, and clothes for my kids. These became a source of comfort for us

during a time of so much uncertainty. Now is my turn to pay it forward. I want to take this chance to teach my kids about the value of generosity and helping others.

At the same time, I hope my pre-loved items will give someone else the same joy it gave my family,” shared Assistant Vice President for Corporate Communications Karen Carvajal.

3. Decluttering contributes to living more simply and more intentionally

For those embracing a more intentional (or more values-oriented) mindset in 2024, there’s no better way to start this lifestyle than by purging our house of things that no longer serve their purpose in our lives. Living simply and intentionally also means making deliberate choices in our consumption habits so letting go of things that clutter our mind and spirit is the way to go.

4. It contributes to waste reduction

‘Recycling’ our items by way of donation is one concrete way we can contribute to a circular economy that reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills. By putting our pre-loved things into new hands, they’re given life anew and may serve the needs of a new generation.

Converge is greeting 2024 with renewed hope and optimism as it turned over more than 10 boxes full last December 28, consisting of clothes, books, toys, and household tools and items. This is the first batch of donations from the company as it kicks off the program.

“I’d like to thank the employees of Converge who took part in this charitable cause, embodying the value of charity and compassion for the under-resourced. With institutional partners like Converge, we can strengthen the reach of the Catholic Church to those in need and truly make a difference,” said Rev. Fr. Anton Pascual, Executive Director of Caritas Manila.

The spirit of charity was alive and well this season as Converge employees and their families donated pre-loved but usable items to Caritas Manila. 

Converge reigns at the top of the latest Netflix ISP Speed Index

Netflix, the streaming giant, evaluates ISPs monthly on the prime-time performance of Netflix content on their network. This November, Converge once again took the top spot - a position it has held for most of the year.

Converge ICT Solutions Inc., a prominent fiber broadband provider in the Philippines, dominated the most recent Netflix ISP Speed Index Leaderboard, taking the top spot, which it has maintained for the majority of the year. The Netflix ISP Speed Index gauges how well Netflix performs during prime time on specific internet service providers (ISPs) across the world. Generally speaking, faster ISP performance translates into better picture quality, quicker start times, and fewer interruptions when streaming Netflix movies, TV shows, and other content.

“As we hold on to the number one spot in this important barometer of internet performance, we are inspired to keep on doing better for our customers, especially for our more than two million subscribers who rely on our end-to-end fiber connectivity to sustain their digital life," said Dennis Anthony Uy, CEO and Co-Founder of Converge. 

Netflix, the streaming giant, evaluates ISPs monthly on the prime-time performance of Netflix content on their network. This November, Converge once again took the top spot - a position it has held for most of the year.

The Netflix Speed Index in November 2023 showed the speed of Converge to clock in at 3 Mbps, with its 11-month average at 3.25 Mbps. This surpasses the country’s average speed of 2.8 Mbps. 

Staying true to its commitment to give the best value for money while not sacrificing broadband quality and speed, Converge has forayed into more affordable fiber products in 2023. 

It has introduced S2S or Surf2Sawa, its prepaid fiber internet product which offers speeds of 25 Mbps for six gadgets at P700 per month. It also further expanded its postpaid portfolio with BIDA Fiber which is priced at sub-P1000, or P888 per month, giving 35 Mbps for six gadgets. 

Converge continues to set the pace for the broadband industry not just with the introduction of mass-market fiber products but with the drive toward going beyond connectivity. Its Enterprise segment is now gaining traction with a slew of product offerings that add value on top of the fiber broadband connection.

Leaning on its strength as a strong, reliable, and consistent broadband provider, Converge has also partnered with TapDMV to offer subscribers free access to BlastTV, an entertainment streaming service. Converge subscribers can enjoy hundreds of top movie and television titles through any device connected to its network. Plans are underway for Converge to make a bigger splash in the over-the-top (OTT) digital services.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

The Filipinos’ favorite: Home Credit financed 1.7M mobile phones in 2023

The top consumer finance provider in the Philippines, Home Credit, has identified an interesting trend in the Philippine market as 2023 draws to an end: a rise in the number of financed purchases of various commodities, most notably mobile phones, which accounted for 1.7 million of all transactions. The year-long promotions from Home Credit, such as the most recent installment financing offer with 0% interest, helped to allow this spike in product sales. Purchases on Home Credit increased significantly this year in a variety of categories, indicating a change in customer preferences. Home Credit's products have changed to suit the changing preferences and aspirations of Filipinos, with an emphasis on enabling them to achieve their individual and family objectives.

Among the highlighted categories, mobile and tablet purchases garnered the greatest number of units sold, indicating a continued reliance on these devices for work, education, and entertainment. The volume sold in this category, marked by an impressive 1.7M units, showcases the enduring significance of these gadgets in everyday life. For this year, the brand to highlight is Apple, which is now the top mobile brand for Home Credit, with a 100% sales increase from last year. 

Filipino consumers have also shown a marked interest in upgrading their living spaces. The appeal of modernizing households resonated strongly, evident in the 420,000 units of home appliances financed by Home Credit. The specifications of these appliances, tailored to enhance convenience and efficiency, have appealed to consumers seeking to upgrade their home appliances in time for the new year. 

Meanwhile, the demand for TV and electronics, computers, furniture, and other home improvement materials saw notable traction, signifying a desire for enhanced connectivity and comfort in homes. The specifications of these products, focused on delivering superior performance and comfort, have been key factors driving their popularity.

When it comes to goods supporting sustainability, the demand has also been noteworthy, especially for e-bikes. This year, Home Credit has seen a 122% sales growth in e-bikes, a proof point in the growing trend of green living and alternative transportation products. 

The introduction of The Great 0% Festival by Home Credit has been pivotal in driving these purchases. This limited-time promo offers holiday deals and 0% interest rates on installment plans, spanning from six to 18 months. Available at Home Credit partner stores and, these offers make lifestyle and tech products more accessible, promising an unforgettable holiday season for Filipino families.

Don’t miss The Great 0% Festival! Make your dreams and aspirations this holiday season come true with Home Credit’s special offer, available until January 2024!

To know more about the latest updates from Home Credit Philippines, visit its official website, You may also follow its official Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok accounts. Customers are also encouraged to download the My Home Credit App on Google Play to learn more about the latest promos and see what’s new in Shopping Mall Philippines

Home Credit Philippines is a financing company duly licensed and supervised by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

Thursday, December 21, 2023

S&P Global awards Converge a better ESG Score in 2023.

Converge President and Co-Founder (fifth from Left), Maria Grace Y. Uy and Chief Sustainability Officer Benjamin Azada (fourth from Left) are behind initiatives to reduce waste to landfill output, such as the Countdown to Zero waste program. 

Converge ICT Solutions Inc. (PSE:CNVRG), a prominent fiber broadband provider, has once again received an improved Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) rating. This improvement was noted in S&P Global's annual examination of companies’ handling of ESG impacts, opportunities, and risks.

The company's ESG score improved from 40 in 2022 to 53 out of 100.

“In 2023, we have put in place significant guardrails to ensure our sustainability practice remains aligned with the organization's values and goals, as well as with international standards. This is a testament to responsible business practice that will create long-term positive impact,” said Benjamin B. Azada, Converge Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Sustainability Officer.

Financial information and analytics firm S&P Global has given a score of 50 to Converge on its Corporate Sustainability Assessment or CSA. The CSA aims to capture emerging trends and the most financially material topics in each industry. 

Converge improved by 10 points from the previous year's CSA score of 40 to a score of 50 in the Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA) in 2023. The ESG score, which uses a modeling technique to solve disclosure gaps and improve information coverage, was established by S&P Global in the same year. Converge obtained a final ESG Score of 53 using this revised criteria, demonstrating its dedication to sustainability and ethical business practices.

Based on the CSA, Converge saw the most improvement in the Environmental and Social Dimensions, increasing by 14 and 18 points respectively. Under the Social Dimension, Converge ranked high on the criteria of Privacy Protection and Occupational Health and Safety. In the Environment Dimension, the criteria of Climate Strategy received a boost of 32 points.

Converge scored higher than the industry average on all three Dimensions of Governance and Economy, Environment, and Social.

Under the guidance of Chief Sustainability Officer (and concurrently, Chief Strategy Officer) Benjamin Azada, Converge has received back-to-back ESG upgrades in 2023. 

Converge supports climate-related financial disclosure and has shifted to 100 percent clean energy for its Pasig and Pampanga data centers, while investments continue to be made to remain resilient to natural disasters. Moreover, the Converge has put in place a Personal Data Privacy Policy to guide the handling of employees and stakeholders’ personal data, and inform data subjects of their rights. The company has set a yearly objective of having zero customer data breaches.

“In an uncertain economic landscape, Converge navigates with a compass of strategic risk management, steering through challenges to remain resilient and build towards future-proofing the company,” said Converge VP and Head of Enterprise Risk Management Jerome Mario Orfano.

Just this October, Converge also gained a ‘low-risk’ assessment from Sustainalytics, an ESG and corporate governance analytics firm.

Conti's Pays it Forward with a Delightful Act of Kindness

With complimentary Mango Bravo cakes and a sincere plea to spread the cheer to a stranger, Conti's Bakeshop and Restaurant elevated the festive spirit of Christmas.

A second full cake was provided to diners who received a complimentary Mango Bravo, with an instruction to return the favor by giving the second cake to a stranger.

"The act of paying it forward fosters a sense of connection and community. Sharing Mango Bravo with a stranger is a simple yet powerful way to bridge gaps and strengthen the bonds between people," Patricia Marañon-Tan, one of the daughters of Conti’s founder, said.

"In a world that can sometimes feel chaotic, simple acts of kindness stand out. It has the power to create a positive and uplifting environment."

Conti's decided to give out Mango Bravo cakes because they are the most popular dessert on the adored food brand's menu and have been a staple of many families' Noche Buena celebrations for the past 26 years.

"Our signature cake represents indulgence and celebration. It's not just a treat for the taste buds but a symbol of joy and festivity," Marañon-Tan said.

"Christmas is a season of giving, and what better way to celebrate it than by sharing the joy our beloved Mango Bravo brings. It's a small gesture that we hope will inspire a chain of kindness that will make a lot of people's holiday season brighter."

The special project was captured in a video that had been getting a lot of attention and spreading warm holiday cheer on Conti's Facebook page ( where it was posted.

To know more about Conti’s Bakeshop & Restaurant visit or check out the Facebook (@contisph), Instagram (@contis_ph), and Tiktok (@contisph) pages. 

SM City Valenzuela Seals Partnership With 1 Million To Local Government

SM City Valenzuela demonstrated its steadfast support and commitment to the Valenzuela City local government through a significant contribution of 1 million pesos. Present at the ceremonial turnover are Valenzuela City Mayor Weslie “Wes” T. Gatchalian and SM’s Assistant Vice President for Mall Operations, Ana T. Datu (middle). Sharing honors (L-R) are SM City Valenzuela Assistant Mall Managers Kristine Joyce S. Pimentel and Cenen III M. Pamintuan

SM City Valenzuela demonstrated its unwavering support and commitment to the local government of Valenzuela City by making a substantial contribution of 1 million pesos. This significant contribution solidifies SM City Valenzuela's dedication to the city's progress and its role as a key partner in fostering positive growth within the community.

The timing of this donation holds particular significance as Valenzuela City celebrates its 400th founding anniversary with the theme "400 Years of History and Progress." From its origins as a humble agricultural town in the province of Bulacan, Valenzuela City has evolved into a "Livable City," recognized for its good governance and award-winning innovative programs. 

"We are delighted with our partnership with Valenzuela City, especially on the significant milestone of its 400th founding anniversary. The 1-million-peso contribution is a testament to our shared vision for a thriving and vibrant community. SM City Valenzuela has always been, and will continue to be, an active partner in the city's journey toward progress," said SM’s Assistant Vice President for Mall Operations Ana T. Datu. 

As SM City Valenzuela continues to be an integral part of the community, the mall looks forward to actively participating in the Local Government’s initiatives and projects that contribute to the overall well-being and development of the city.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Puerto Princesa: A Paradise and Sports Mecca

Gathering strength, determination, and a sea of endurance: Participants unite for the Ironman 70.3 Puerto Princesa 2023, capturing the essence of the long-distance triathlon journey in a single frame.

Travelers, adventurers, and nature enthusiasts rank Puerto Princesa City, which is located in the Philippines' Last Frontier, as their top choice. The city is now firmly establishing itself as the “Sports Capital of the Philippines” thanks to the numerous sporting events that take place there.

Invincible. Amazing. Indestructible. Puerto Princesa is the epitome of this, offering top-notch sporting events including wakeboarding, kiteboarding, water skiing, banana boat rides, tube rides, and hookah diving. The city also frequently hosts the Puerto Princesa International Motocross Grand Prix, Thai Riders, Pinoy Riders, Mountain Bike XC Challenge, Boxing Eve "Hamon sa Puerto Princesa," and the "Motocross Masters of Asia," the Philippine leg of the FIM UAM Asian Motocross Series.

Puerto Princesa understands that sports and tourism are interrelated and complementary driving forces for the promotion and sustainable economic development of the city as an attractive tourism destination. It continues to boost its tourist arrivals by hosting and organizing more sporting events.

The city is blessed with natural resources and landscape to hold excellent mass-participation events such as triathlons and marathons, mountain bike and motocross races, beach volleyball, and other water sports competitions.

“Talagang naka-project na ang Puerto Princesa sa sports tourism. Syempre yung hinahabol nating sports tourism yung mayroong international flavor,” City Mayor Lucilo Rodriguez Bayron said.

Mega sports events such as the Ironman and Dragon Boat Festival can be catalysts for tourism development in Puerto Princesa if successfully leveraged in terms of destination branding, infrastructure development, and other economic, cultural, and social benefits.

Ironman 70.3 participants rushing from Puerto Princesa Bay


The second year of the IRONMAN 70.3 Puerto Princesa - Asia Tri-Club Championship, the ultimate test of endurance, strategy, and strength, capped off the Philippines' triathlon season. It was successfully held in Puerto Princesa on November 12.

A total of 523 foreign and Filipino triathletes from 38 countries participated in the amazing race. Satar Salem (4 hours, 22 minutes, and 25 seconds) and Leyann Ramo (5 hours, 2 minutes, and 56 seconds) both of Tri SND Barracuda dominated the top overall age group for the male and female categories, respectively.

China’s Junyu Cao finished the race in second place at 4:23.13 while Dutch Olympian Eric Van der Linden rounded off the top three finishers in the male category with 4:24.41. Ramo’s teammate Lyllian Grace Banzon trailed her at second place in 5:29.23 while American Catherine Wood completed the top three in the women’s side with the time of 5:36.26.

Tri SND Barracuda of Lanao del Norte netted the country’s top triathlon squad a whopping P500,000 purse put up by Puerto Princesa Mayor Lucilo Bayron.

The competition was divided into three segments: a 1.9-kilometer swim in Puerto Princesa Baywalk, a 90-kilometer bike ride through the city’s southern part, and a 21.1-kilometer run. The grueling course covered 113.0 kilometers or 70.3 miles.

City Mayor Lucilo Rodriguez Bayron expressed his gratitude to the organizers, participants, and spectators for their support for Ironman 70.3. He also showed confidence that the competition will be successfully held again in the city next year as more local and foreign delegates are expected to attend.


The city understands that one of the most popular ways to experience a destination is through a sports event. It allows sports enthusiasts as well as tourists to better engage with local people, nature, and culture.

That happened when about 200 local and visiting riders participated in the 3rd Legends Ride 2023 held on November 18 in Puerto Princesa. The sports activity is part of the successful Subaraw Biodiversity Festival 2023.

From the starting point at Caltex Junction 3, the riders of different groups from all over the country, led by the Tamilok Motorcycle Group, marched together. The other participants were the Big Bikes, Palawan Street Monkeys, Himass Motorcycle Group/Hijos, United Sports Bike of Palawan (USP), and others on small bikes.

The route took the legend riders to Puerto Princesa landmarks such as the Montible Junction, Napsan at the Villa Francesca Resort in Simpocan, the Tala Beach Resort, and straight to the Tennis Covered Court of the Ramon V. Mitra Sports Complex, inside Balayong People’s Park.

“Thank you very much for bringing the Legends Ride to our city. Because you enjoyed it, you will come back here. You are always welcome here in Puerto Princesa City,” said City Mayor Bayron at the fellowship dinner at the Tennis Covered Court as he congratulated the organizers, riders, guests, and sponsors for the successful holding of the Legends Ride 2023.

Jun Diagono, president of the National Federation of Motorcycles said they are very happy with the success of Legends Ride 2023. He set two goals in going to Puerto Princesa City: first was to unite all the big bike clubs in the Philippines; and second, to invite various groups to the National Motorcycle Convention on April 26-27, 2024, at the Subic Bay Convention Center.

Diagono also convinced Puerto Princesa City bike legend Edward Butch Chase to hold the national convention in the city next year. He also promised to bring LMFI’s 54-member bike clubs to participate in the upcoming event, including the Federation of Bikes Club based in Mindanao.

At the awarding, the youngest rider was Blu Andre Rausa, 19 years old; and the oldest rider was Bob Del Rosario, 74 years old. The Most Organized Group is Evo Riders Club Philippines and the Biggest Group is Palawan Street Monkeys. A Special Citation was given to Philip Dulatas as the overall chair of the event, and a Certificate of Greatest Appreciation for the support of William Genato, Naj Abdul, and Elroy John “Clink: Hagedorn. The Living legend award was given to Edward Butch Chase.

The other participating groups were the Legends Ride Binuang, GBC, Bandits, Baghawi Rider Club, Bundakan Motorcycle Club, and Widows Son Masonic Riders Association.


The 2nd International Dragon Boat Festival 2023, held on November 19, attracted teams from Chinese Taipei, Manila, Cebu, and Siargao which competed in the just-concluded 200-meter event. From this series of international activities, it has been proven that it is possible to raise the level of programs and activities in Puerto Princesa.

Strength, strategy, paddling speed, and teamwork were the advantages of the 'paddlers' who won the championship in the final competition. They showed the audience a breathtaking fight. Everyone wants to get away and no one wants to be left behind. So even on a sunny day, the applause and screams from the audience were loud and clear.

In the Women’s Category, the Alliance of Masters from Manila won the championship; the 1st runner-up was the Philippine Titans – Manila; Fire Dragons A was 2nd runner-up – Manila; and Rampage was 3rd runner-up – Manila.

In the Men’s Category, Mr. Canoe from Chinese Taipei won the championship. Followed by Philippine Titans in second place, Dagun Pilipinas A in third place, and Alliance of Masters in fourth place.

The battle in the Mixed Category was also uneventful where the Siargao Dragons from Surigao del Norte proved that they deserve to be champions. The Alliance of Masters placed second; Hongkong China Canoe took third place followed by SAG-1 from Manila in fourth place.

In the Masters' Category where those aged 40 and above were allowed to show their skills, the Sugbo Mighty Dragons from Cebu became champions; followed in second place by the Alliance of Masters; Rampage in third place; and Blue Phoenix from Manila in fourth place.

Praise and admiration were showered on the leadership of the Philippine Canoe Kayak Dragon Boat Federation, or PCKDF, for taking the lead in organizing the international sports event in the city.

Also heavily praised were the efforts shown by Mayor Lucilo Rodriguez Bayron in the tremendous success achieved by the municipal government for the competition.

“It was not easy but we know that we can win these big international events of ours. Of course with the support of department heads, city hall employees, and the citizens who are there to support what we do. And even the organizations that trust us for big events. I am very grateful,” said City Mayor Bayron. “Please also expect that there are many more activities to look forward to that will make the city recognized by the whole world not only for its eco-tourism wealth but also to become famous as the Sports Tourism Capital of the Philippines!”


It's the ideal time of year to bring warmth and happiness into your house as the holidays draw near. After all, the holidays are a time for joy, thankfulness, and making treasured memories. This carefully picked selection of Christmas gift ideas adds warmth, comfort, and style to the rooms we treasure most, whether you want to update your house or want to surprise your loved ones with meaningful gifts.

Surprise your loved ones with the gift of cozy moments with Our Home recliners.

  • Surprise your loved ones with the gift of cozy moments this Holiday season with recliners available at Our Home.

  • Unwrap the joy of comfort this season with Our Home's collection of cushions that everyone will love to have and hug. 

  • Give the gift of organized beauty.  Our Home’s jewelry organizers are designed to keep precious treasures safe and stylish. 

  • Looking for the perfect gift for those who love to host? Our Home’s serveware and barware make the perfect gifts for them.

  • Nespresso machines for coffee enthusiasts that they will love.

Whether you're surprising loved ones or indulging yourself this holiday season, these gift ideas will help you celebrate the joy of giving. Add enduring elegance and a festive feel to your home to enhance the special and unforgettable nature of the holiday season.

Visit OUR HOME Store at SM City Grand Central, shop online, or call a Personal Shopper  

Converge facilitates the Geeks on a Beach conference for the PH startup community.

DICT Secretary Ivan John Uy delivered the keynote address, informing the audience of the state of the startup industry in the Philippines

Leading fiber broadband provider Converge ICT Solutions Inc. supported local businesses by offering free internet access to the Geeks on A Beach (GOAB) conference. GOAB brings together venture capital investors, technology, design, and innovation professionals, and up-and-coming entrepreneurs.

After a five-year break, GOAB, which is co-organized by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) and the social business #GeeksPH, comes back this year. Panglao, Bohol's seaside town hosted a gathering of over 300 technopreneurs, entrepreneurs, investors, venture capitalists, and angel sponsors at the Bellevue Resort.

Dennis Anthony Uy, co-founder and CEO of Converge, stated that the company has always encouraged small businesses and been motivated to act as a catalyst for entrepreneurs looking to grow their enterprises.

“Just like many of the GOAB attendees, I was once a startup entrepreneur. My wife Grace and I started Converge with the vision of giving Filipinos access to world-class connectivity — the same kind that you get in progressive countries. From a startup in Pampanga, we challenged the giants and expanded our network nationwide to reach Visayas and Mindanao,” Mr. Uy said.

“May Geeks on a Beach continues to encourage and support Philippine startups so that more and more Filipinos will benefit from the digital solutions brought about by the creativity and innovation of our young businesses,” he added.

Converge's AVP and Head of Innovation and Product Management, Leonardo Baniqued, stated that Converge is willing to collaborate with entrepreneurs. 

“We have the broadest fiber network in the country and this means that our network is already available. We can now provide budding businesses with productivity solutions that will help them scale up,” he said.

Converge Corporate Communications and Public Relations Social Media Manager and Community Relations Manager, Ederic Eder and Jennifer Ambanta-Realubit respectively, attend the GOAB from November 23 - 24 in Panglao, Bohol. 

With the launch of Converge Workplace, a portfolio of cloud-based business productivity tools tailored specifically for micro, small, and medium-sized businesses (MSMEs), earlier this year, Converge is expanding beyond connection goods.

Ivan John Uy, the DICT Secretary, expressed his satisfaction with the Philippines' transformation into a major regional hub for startups and digital innovation during the conference.

“Our vibrant startup ecosystem has been promisingly growing with more than 1,100 startups, 60 incubators and accelerators, 50 venture capitalists, and more than 200 co-working spaces nationwide that enable collaboration,” Sec. Uy noted.

The expansion of the Philippine startup ecosystem, the difficulties of launching a business, venture capital, trends, laws and regulations, and expanding talent management are a few of the subjects covered at the GOAB conference. Web3, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence were among the other recurrent issues.

Startups under the DICT's startup program, whose ideas ranged from a security warning system to an agri-tech platform, had the opportunity to present their ideas to investors and other guests during a lightning pitch session. 

Representatives from the Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Science and Technology, the local government of Bohol, and officials from the DICT were also present at GOAB. 

This year's Philippine Startup Week was highlighted by the GOAB conference, which was a collection of activities coordinated by the nation's startup community and overseen by the government. 

Saturday, December 16, 2023

A Retro Industrial Cinematic Haven at SM Cinema Pulilan

As SM Cinema Pulilan opens its doors and ushers in a wave of historic charm harmonized with cutting-edge cinematic technology, be ready for the ultimate cinematic experience. Its three newest theaters provide an unmatched movie-watching experience while letting patrons enjoy a front-row show. 

Impeccable Visuals and Sonic Brilliance

With the cutting-edge Dolby 7.1 Surround Sound System and Standard Laser Projector System, experience a feast for the senses. Take in the wonder with unparalleled clarity as the Dolby Surround Sound transports you to an enthralling world, elevating each moment for the pinnacle of cinematic enjoyment.

Conveniently Plush Seating

Savor comfort and style with Opus Fixed seating, which guarantees both for all 245 guests. Cinemas 1 and 2 have a combined capacity of 93 guests, and Cinema 3 can comfortably seat 59 people. Every theater has two PWD seats among its opulent seats, guaranteeing accessibility and inclusivity for all film buffs.

Retro Industrial-Inspired Ambiance

Every area radiates a revitalizing vibe, from the large entrance to the inviting booths, and from the halls to the restrooms, creating a happy and visually appealing atmosphere. Every element has been painstakingly planned for an adventure, turning your visit into a visual tour through the heyday of film history.

Capture timeless moments and lose yourself in nostalgia in a setting that expertly combines traditional design elements with modern flair. Step back in time and embrace the future of cinema at SM Cinema Pulilan. Don't miss the chance to participate in this cinematic adventure at SM Cinema Pulilan. Get your tickets now and bring your friends along for a memorable movie-going experience in a setting designed just for movie buffs like you.