You are on page 1of 5



His principle is much grounded and to quote this man of humility, he once said, "We are competing against the giants.
Without faith and without the intervention of the divine, it is really difficult to survive in this industry." The founder of Hapee
toothpaste in the Philippines, making his company, Lamoiyan Corp., the countrys first homegrown toothpaste name.
Pedro, became one of the first Filipinos who became successful in the exporting industry. His Chinese surname, Kwok
means "to give" is truly an exact description of this man. He started doing business at an early age, compared to other
boys his age, Pedro tried and jumped into buying and selling ball pens in grade school even if the results were not good. A
Chinese-Filipino descent, he graduated from Ateneo de Manila University and earned a degree in Business Management.
He also received the Honorary Doctor of Philosophy in Technological Management from Technological University of the
He is married with one son, Joel, who is now also part of the said company. His son is a marketing graduate from De La
Salle University. A Christian since birth, his values extends to people whom he helped fulfill their dreams. He chairs this
foundation and established schools in Laguna, Nueva Ecija and Palawan and 13 community centers all over the country.
He also supports an NGO Kaisa Para sa Kaunlaran which helps produce a television show for children.
Corporate Social Responsibility
A longtime Christian, Pedro has made Lamoiyan an instrument helping him spread the GOOD NEWS, "People who get
close to God introduce the gospel to other people," he notes. As such, his employees attend Bible studies every week and
the company, on top of providing the expected personnel benefits, also sees to the spiritual growth of its people. "We are
careful in choosing people who in certain ways will be working with Lamoiyan," he adds. "They have to principally believe
in God," In fact, Lamoiyan's corporate motto is "To make a difference for the glory of GOD"
However, the low-priced toothpaste was not the only strategy that took Lamoiyan Corporation to the pinnacles of success.
The company was lauded for having the Most Outstanding Program for Equal Employment Opportunity by providing
work opportunities to the countrys hearing-impaired community members.
Lamoiyans employment program includes free housing for more than 30 deaf-mute staff, while the companys managers
are required to learn sign-language as a means of communicating with the hearing-impaired staff. Since the founding of
the Lamoiyan Corporation, about 180 deaf-mute students have received a free college education through D.E.A.F. which
stands for Deaf Evangelistic Alliance Foundation, founded and chaired by Cecilio K. Pedro and officially recognized by the
Philippine governments Department of Education and Culture.
Cecilio K. Pedro was awarded with an Honorary Doctor of Philosophy in Technological Management by the Technological
University of the Philippines in recognition of his corporate and social achievements. Dr. Pedro ingrained his own belief
through the companys corporate motto: Making the difference for the Glory of God.
he more important other reason: He has done better than the small David who killed the giant Goliath. This Pedro bested
not one but two giants in the toothpaste business. This corner refers to Dr. Cecilio Kwok Pedro, whose faith in God and in
his God-given ability to surmount every obstacle has led him to the peak of Mt. Success. Dr. Pedro, president and chief
executive officer of Lamoiyan Corp., maker of Hapee toothpaste, was one of the six famous business magnates the
others being Manuel V. Pangilinan, Jesus Tambunting, Ramon del Rosario, Jonathan de Luzuriaga and Narzalina Lim
who spoke at the day-long 1st Iloilo Business Summit at the Sarabia Manor last Friday, July 29. Believe it or not, even if
Dr. Pedro were the lone speaker, I would still have attended the summit; I have always been fascinated by his fantastic
rise. I had only seen him once before on TV, but that was enough encouragement for me to see him in person.
As the fourth speaker, Dr. Pedro came up the rostrum at 2:00 p.m. to deliver an inspirational speech, Breaking through
Barriers: The Hapee Story. He began very unusually, asking the more than five hundred people seated around round
tables to stand and turn right. Massage the back of the person in front of you, he said. We did for a few seconds. Turn
around and massage the person who had massaged you. We did, wondering what it was all about. You, the speaker
thundered, an index finger pointing at us. You have just obeyed the golden rule: Do unto others what you would have
others do unto you. The golden rule, he stressed, had always been among his favorite quotes. He also mentioned many
more, including that of the late United States President John F. Kennedy: Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask
what you can do for your country. Pedro cited the initials CSR as the keys that have opened to him doors to opportunities.
And while spelling that out as corporate social responsibility, he said that C could also mean change; S, sacrifice; and
R, rewards.
To change others, he argued that you and I should do it first. The reason why the President has successfully swayed
highly-placed government officials into disabling vehicle siren or wang-wang is because he, the highest official of the
land, has practiced what he promised one year ago, Wala nang wang-wang.

With regard to sacrifice, he pointed to the late celebrated nun, Mother Theresa, as a servant leader capable of placing
others above self. He recalled that when she visited Manila, she empathized with the less fortunate. She would not eat
dinner after meeting the squatters who had nothing to eat, Dr. Pedro said. To appease Mother Theresa, Pedro recalled,
We sent food to the squatters. He quoted the late American preacher Henry Ward Beecher: In this world, it is not what
we take up but what we give up that makes us rich. As regards the rewards, in R, Pedro enthused they could just
present themselves sooner or later if we see the world for what it can be. This was the advice he gave himself in 1986
when a dark future seemed to be hovering over the business he had nurtured since 1977 the Aluminum Container Inc.,
which was making aluminum tubes for two multinational toothpaste manufacturers, Colgate-Palmolive and Unilever. The
almost simultaneous decision of these customers to sever business with him was so sudden that he had no alternative but
close shop. They were shifting to cheaper plastic tubes, he revealed. Realizing that no other toothpaste company would
patronize his aluminum-molding machine, Pedro decided to take an indefinite rest, hoping to bounce back at first
opportunity. Giving up was not an option, he said. As an elder of the United Evangelical Churches of the Philippines, he
wanted to prove by example the adage, God helps those who help themselves. Two years later, the opportunity
presented itself. His family had decided to revive his machinery by launching the toothpaste firm, Lamoiyan Corporation,
against all odds. The product would be branded Hapee. The challenging question was: How could he snatch a share of
the market at that time when his former customers were enjoying 99% of the pie? Certainly he could not compete in
promotion and distribution aspects. The happy Hapee answer: Match the quality of the old brands; but cut price by 50%!
Other independent toothpaste makers have erupted since then, but Hapee is happy to be in the no. 3 position in the
Philippine market. Hapee is made in the Philippines, Pedro happily announced. It is no secret that Colgate is made in
Thailand; Close-up, in Indonesia. Reinforced with an added P100-million capitalization, Hapee and Kutitap (the newer
Lamoiyan brand) have also penetrated neighboring countries like China, Vietnam and Indonesia, proving Pedros
conviction that the Filipino can be world-class. Pedro proudly disclosed that 70% of Lamoiyan employees are either
deaf-mute or hearing-impaired, and they could work better than talkers. They are focused, he quipped. Walang tsismis.
Pedros affection for the deaf-mute is also visible in his chairmanship of the Deaf Evangelistic Association of the
Philippines (DEAF), which sponsors deaf-mute scholars in sign language. I will not bring a single centavo when I leave
this world, the 58-year-young entrepreneur intoned. I want to be remembered for what I did. Dr. Cecilio K. Pedro a
Business Management graduate of Ateneo de Manila (1975) with honorary degree in Doctorate of Philosophy in
Technological Management from the Technological University of the Philippines quipped that he had never been a good
Ateneo student: I barely passed with a grade of 2.2. He did not have to be good in college; he had already learned his
first business lesson while in grade 2. I sold ball pens to my classmates. If they had no money, I told them to pay when
able. Some of them did not pay. I lost the business but gained the lesson that a sale is not a sale unless collected.
Lamoiyan/Hapee, 25 years of business & CSR success
BULL MARKET BULL SHEET By Wilson Lee Flores (The Philippine Star) | Updated May 6, 2013
Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve. Napoleon Hill
A distinctive homegrown consumer brand in Philippine business, Hapee toothpaste and its founder Cecilio Kwok Pedro is
this year celebrating the brands 25th anniversary, not just of flourishing business, but also of diverse civic undertakings
through their strong corporate social responsibility (CSR). Apart from strengthening its market share locally, Hapee plans
to continue expanding overseas.
A Christian entrepreneur who passionately believes in private business with a social conscience, Cecilio K. Pedro has
supported the international non-governmental organization (NGO) Operation Smile Philippines to care for children afflicted
with oral cleft. His factory is unique and noted for employing a lot of hearing-impaired people.
Lamoiyan Corp. has also donated dental equipment and supplies to the newly inaugurated Manila Cleft Care Center in
Sta. Ana Hospital, Manila City.
Cecilio K. Pedro has also donated various public school-buildings to poor rural regions of the Philippines through the
Operation: Barrio Schools project of the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce & Industry, Inc.
(FFCCCII), of which he was in March elected one of this civic and business groups new vice presidents.
Humble beginnings of a well-loved Philippine brand
Like Jollibee in fast food and Bench in fashion, Hapee has become a progressive homegrown Filipino brand competing
directly with top multinational brands. How did this brand and product start 25 years ago by seizing an unexpected
business opportunity?
The prime mover behind Hapee toothpaste is entrepreneur Dr. Pedro, president and chief executive officer of Lamoiyan
Corporation. He started out in the 1970s as an aluminum toothpaste tubes manufacturer to the multinational firms.
In 1985, the multinationals started changing their toothpaste packaging from aluminum to plastic tubes, so Pedro was
stuck with industrial equipment but no customers, plus a stockpile of aluminum tubes. Faced with this crisis, he decided to
venture into toothpaste manufacturing with affordable Hapee and Kutitap brands. Lamoiyan, the firm name, came from the
name of Pedros beloved grandmother, a gesture of filial love.

Like a David challenging the well-established Goliaths who have for generations cornered the local market, Pedro
changed the dental care landscape in the country by introducing his own locally-made, world-class quality and affordable
toothpaste brand as a new alternative.
How did Dr. Cecilio K. Pedro come up with the brand name Hapee? He said: Initially, the brand I chose was Smile
because when you brush your teeth, you are supposed to smile. When you frown, it becomes difficult to brush your teeth.
And when you smile, you look happy.
However, Pedro discovered that the brand Smile had already been registered and owned by a multinational company.
He nevertheless came up with another brand name with the same positive mindset and cheerful disposition, which best
describes the feeling of people who smile.
I thought happy did not seem suitable as a brand, so I changed it from h-a-p-p-y to h-a-p-e-e, Pedro explained.
The choice of Hapee as brand name was deemed by marketing observers as a stroke of genius due to its easy and
positive brand recall in the Philippines and eventually in several foreign markets as well.
Social mission: Offering affordable Filipino brand for basic dental care
The 25-year journey of Lamoiyan Corporation and Hapee toothpaste has been historic and fulfilling. Dr. Pedro, his
dedicated team of executives and employees competed versus the multinationals with innovations, marketing initiatives
and consistent world-class quality. They envision Hapee to be at par with multinational brands.
Why such optimism about the prospects for Hapee toothpaste? Pedro believes that Filipino consumers are ready for a
good-quality Filipino-made toothpaste as an alternative and affordable brand.
National University (NU) College of Dentistry dean Dr. Joseph Dy Lim of Dr. Smile Dental Center at Podium Mall told this
writer that one of the social problems of Philippine society is the large proportion of urban and rural poor who do not have
adequate dental hygiene practices and basic dental care services.
The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Board of Dentistry chairman Dr. Steve Mark G. Gan of Gan Advanced
Osseointegration Center (GAOC) also said that much can still be done to improve accessibility of basic dental care
Pedro said: We introduced world-class quality toothpaste at affordable prices so that many Filipinos can afford to brush
their teeth regularly. We found out that many Filipinos, especially in the provinces, could not brush their teeth because
toothpaste and toothbrush are expensive. That dream pushed us initially and we were not afraid to face the multinational
companies because we believe there is this need to help Filipinos, especially those belonging to the poorest of the poor.
For entrepreneur Pedro, his business has a mission to help improve the peoples quality of life through affordable and
good dental products, and his employees share his sense of mission for the past 25 years.
Every year we survive the competition thrown at us and we celebrate each happy moment. Every day that I wake up I
consider it a happy moment, thanking God for giving me another day. There are so many challenges and difficulties in this
world but it really depends on how you look at life. For me, we are so blessed as a country and as a people. We are
fortunate here in Lamoiyan Corporation and we tell the world that yes, we can survive and we can compete with the best
of the best in the world, he said.
Corporate social responsibility as part of Lamoiyan & Hapee DNA
Under the idealistic Dr. Pedro, corporate social responsibility (CSR) in Lamoiyan Corporation is considered an intrinsic
aspect of the companys DNA or reason for existence. He said: Here at Lamoiyan Corporation, we are fueled by our
corporate philosophy which is to make a difference for the glory of God.
One of the admirable company policies of Lamoiyan is its hiring the hearing-impaired, who make up about 30 percent of
their total workforce and who receive equal opportunities. Proper attention and training are given them. He said: I call
them angels sent by the Lord. When I see them, Im happy because they were provided by the Lord.
Pedro further elaborated on Lamoiyans experiences with the hearing-impaired: We have very good experiences with the
hearing-impaired as they are always among the top performers. It is quite good to note that every year, around six or
seven of them are in the Top 10 best performers. It is indeed very rewarding and fulfilling to provide jobs to people who
may not be as fortunate as us. At the same time, we are able to promote better relationships and a culture of compassion
and harmony inside the company. This, I think, is what makes us different from the world and this is what we believe is
making a difference for the glory of God.
Going global, growing beyond the Philippines
This writer was part of the Philippine business delegation that visited Myanmar in March, and I observed that one of the
entrepreneurs most assiduous in looking out for economic opportunities in that country was Hapees Dr. Pedro.
The past quarter century of Hapee success in the Philippines has witnessed the growth of Lamoiyan Corporations
manufacturing facilities in Paraaque, Hapee toothpastes new flavors and the addition of new product lines in the
household and personal care segments through brands like Gumtect, Kutitap, Dazz and Licealiz.
Pedro said that this year Hapee toothpaste is setting its sights higher to go global with its commitment to world-class
quality at affordable prices.
He said: We are very bullish about 2013; we believe this is the year when we will grow faster than before. This is the year
where we will probably also explore exports to other countries, particularly Southeast Asia, by the grace of God. We will
again be facing the multinational companies, so hopefully we will gain some footing (there) in the very near future.
Vision, Mission, and Our Values

Lamoiyan Corporation is a 100% Filipino-owned Company with 25 years of manufacturing excellence. Here at Lamoiyan
Corporation, we are fueled by our corporate philosophy which is making the difference for the glory of God.
We exist to improve the quality of life by bringing essential products within the reach of the common people
We aspire to have a Lamoiyan product in every home.
We achieve our mission and vision by living according to our corporate values.
SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. We make our presence a blessing to society.
PURSUIT OF EXCELLENCE. We do things better than before and better than competitors.
INTEGRITY. We do things right.
lNDIVIDUAL. We value individuality by treating each other with fairness.
TEAMWORK. We reach collectively goals that we cannot reach separately.
Alfredo Yao
Yaos successes in all of his business ventures until now have prompted people to call him the juice magnate with the
Midas touch. But that Midas touch hasnt come easy to Yao. Having lost his father at 12, he grew up doing odd jobs to
help his mother feed the family. As a young man, Yao was determined to start something on his own. So he invested in a
small printing press and named it after his mother. In two decades, the press became reasonably successful, so much so
that in 1979 Yao could afford to visit a trade exhibition in Europe. There, he came across a new technology in packaging,
which used plastic and foil to make easy-to-use collapsible packs. Known as doy packs, these were lightweight, and they
could stand upright and be sealed aseptically.
Excited, Yao immediately bought a packaging machine. But back home, nobody was convinced. Juice manufacturers
refused to entertain him and everybody he approached with his new idea turned him away. Never one to lose faith, Yao
began making juices enthusiastically in his own kitchen and packaged them using the equipment he had just bought. His
optimism was not misplaced. Zest-O orange drink was launched within the next two years and Yao never looked back.
Over the years, his business diversified from printing and packaging to realty, banking, food and beverage, trading, and
now aviation.
In his interactions with the media, Yao is fond of reiterating that all his actions, be it in his business or personal life, are a
reflection of the lessons he learned at his mothers lap to work hard, to persevere, and no matter what the
circumstances, to not lose heart. Clearly, it is Alfredo Yaos affinity to meld this simple, earthy wisdom with his knack for
improvising that has added the zest to his business ventures.
Alfredo Yao Zest-O Corporation
When Zest-O was established, it had a single yet valuable mission, to provide products of immense consumer value and
quality that exceeds even the scrutiny of global measure. Alfredo Yao
Alfredo Yao's story is yet another rags-to-riches tale of a self-made businessman who rose from poverty through hard
work and determination. He had to face lifes hard realities at the age of 12 when his father died; his mother tried to
support Alfredo and five other siblings with her earnings as a sidewalk vendor.Through the help of a relative, he was able
to finish his elementary and high school education. However, he was unable to complete his college education at the
Mapua Institute of Technology, which he attended while doing odd jobs at a warehouse of a packaging company.
Through a cousin who was working with a printing press, Alfredo Yao learned the ropes on printing cellophane wrappers
for candies and biscuits and went on to venture into operating a printing press business. The business thrived for about 20
years until Alfredo Yao saw the potentials of the "doy packs", then the latest European packaging technology. Initially,
Alfredo's first intention was to offer the doy-pack packaging to some local juice manufacturers, but since there were no
takers, he ventured into the juice manufacturing business himself.
In 1980, Alfredo Yao started concocting fruit juices in his own kitchen and launched the Zest-O orange drinks in the same
year. It became an instant hit as every mother saw the practicality of putting the light but tightly-packed orange drinks in
their kids lunch boxes. Kids loved it that their chilled fruit drinks stayed cold and fresh till snack time.
Today, Zest-O drinks come in 12 variants and command 80% of the market for fruit juices. It has expanded its business to
China, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Singapore, the U.S. and Europe and has helped revitalize the fruit growing industry
in the provinces, particularly the Philippines native orange variety called "dalandan". The doy packs are being recycled by
local cottage industries into handbags and are now being exported to other countries.
Aside from expanding the business by producing other ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook food products, Zest-O Corporation
now owns the former Asian Spirit Airlines, which CEO Alfredo Yao aptly renamed as Zest Air.

Alfredo Yao, Zest-O Corporation, On Being Ambitious:

Hard work, perseverance and foresight, plus having the right people working with me to develop and sustain the
business are key elements to my success.
Alfredo Yao started the Zest-O Corporation through sheer determination. Hes a self-made businessman who lived an
impoverished life as he finished his elementary and high school education. He was even unable to earn a degree at
Mapua Institute of Technology!
Alfredo Yao was already into the printing press business when he liked the idea of doypack pouches in packaging
beverages. He initially pitched the idea to beverage manufacturers in the Philippines, but none of them expressed interest.
So he ventured into the juice manufacturing business himself in 1980, and the rest is history. Zest-O is now a household
name, as many Filipino families have been enjoying the juice brand for years.
Alfredo M. Yao Chairman Zest-O Corporation
The eldest of six children, Mr. Alfredo Yao started to work at an early age to augment the family income. His father died
when he was only 12 years old, and his mothers earnings as a sidewalk vendor could not support the familys needs. He
would accompany his mother to Chinese gambling dens where he got balato (tips) from the players and met people from
all walks of life. With the help of a relative, Mr. Yao was able to complete his elementary and high school education. He
went to the Mapua Institute of Technology for college but had to leave after two years.
Mr. Yao did odd jobs and worked at a warehouse of a packaging company. On one of his many trips to a printing press
where his cousin worked, Mr. Yao saw potential in the packaging business and decided to invest his time and money in a
printing press. Solemar Commercial Press, a printing press for cellophane wrappers of biscuits and candies, was named
after his mother and role model. It grew steadily during its first 20 years. Then in 1979, while visiting an exhibit in Europe,
Mr. Yao discovered a new technology in packaging called doy packs. He saw promise in the technology and bought a
machine. Mr. Yao tried to market the idea of doy packs to local juice manufacturers but there were no takers. To put the
equipment to use, he started preparing fruit juice in his own kitchen. In 1980, Zest-O juice drink was launched.
Today, Zest-O juice drinks have a total of 12 different flavors and includes in its product line fruit sodas, purees, and
kitchen condiments. Zest-O Corporation commands 80% of the total market for ready-to-drink juices in the country. The
company also produces popular products like the Sunglo Juice Drink, Big 250 Juice Drink, and Plus! Juice Drink. It also
exports mango purees to China, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Singapore, the US, and Europe. From 20 employees in a
small corner of the Solemar compound, Zest-O Corporation now has over 1,000 workers in various offices and facilities
The companys success has even helped other industries prosper. Zest-O introduced dalandan (native orange) fruit
sodas. All ingredients are sourced from local suppliers of fruits, helping revive the dwindling dalandan-growing business in
Southern Luzon. A majority of the growers in these provinces have become contract growers for Zest-O. Its popularity has
also penetrated the fashion industry. Handbags made of recycled Zest-O packs are exported to many countries. It has
come to symbolize Filipino success and ingenuity while providing income to several women engaged in micro
The success of Zest-O has also inspired Mr. Yao to set up other businesses: Semexco Marketing, Inc., Harman Foods,
Amchem Marketing, Inc. American Brands Philippines, Inc., SMI Development Corp., and Philippine Business Bank.
Mr. Yao was awarded the 2003 Centennial Taxpayer for Caloocan by the Caloocan Regional District Office and the 2005
Outstanding Business of Caloocan by the City of Caloocan.
Mission and Vision
Our mission is to be the leading manufacturer and distributor of juices, dairy and related food products that best satisfy the
growing needs of the customers.
This, for us is the means by which we can effectively participate in the social and economic development of the
communities we serve, promote professional growth and well-being of our employees, maintain mutually profitable
relationship with our trade partners and achieve growth level equal to or better than the norms of the food industry.
To be the leading food and beverage Filipino company competing with the multinational companies