August 2021

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SGV was the official tabulator of the Miss Philippines Earth 2021 virtual pageant aired on 8 August. Miss Philippines Earth is an environmental advocacy-driven beauty pageant in which candidates and winners actively promote and get involved in the preservation of the environment and protection of Mother Earth through the 5R’s: Re-think, Reduce, Re-use, Recycle and Respect. Assurance Partner Mariecris N. Barbaso (MNB) led the SGV team that conducted an independent tabulation of scores cast by the judges. Completing the team were Assurance Senior Manager Crystal Aleli Cornell; Senior Associate Angelu Daphne Villanueva; Associates Arkangela Jerusha Tobes and Dian Michelle Luis; Consulting Senior Manager Elvin Mercader; Senior Associate Lucky Wilmar Cimatu; and Associates Edward Guevarra and Alyssa Tapican.MNB representing SGV at the Miss Philippines Earth programApart from a strong emphasis on environmental protection programs, the pageant showcases and promotes various tourist destinations in the Philippines. The pageant celebrated its 21st year, with the theme Colors of the Earth to highlight the vast and unique biodiversity of the country and encourage a positive outlook for the coming years amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Tax Partners Fidela I. Reyes (FIR) and Maricris U. See (MUS) spoke at Tax Talk, a webinar held on 29 July hosted by JCI Senate Manila (JCI). Senior Associate Clarissa Cristelle Chua assisted in organizing the webinar.MUS and FIR with participants at the webinarFIR and MUS explained the salient features of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE Act), related new tax incentives, and the amendments to the Estate Law Tax Amnesty. Afterwards, they facilitated a  discussion with the audience on the possible impact of the tax laws on their respective industries and organizations. The session was followed by a discussion between the JCI team headed by Winston Laurence Wu and the SGV team with FIR and MUS. Both teams agreed to work closely towards future partnership, including future webinars for JCI.
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Last 28 July, SGV Vice Chair and Deputy Managing Partner Vivian C. Ruiz (VCR) and Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) Partner Benjamin N. Villacorte (BNV) were part of the Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) Mean Business Roundtable Dialogue hosted by the Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (PBCWE). With the theme Sustainability as the New Language of Business, speakers Philippine National Bank Senior Assistant Vice President and OIC of the Marketing and Intelligence Analytics and Performance Group Leia Michelle Teodoro and Meralco Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Raymond Ravelo discussed the workplace gender equality policies and sustainability reporting journeys of their respective organizations. The event was attended by representatives from different government agencies and regulators, business groups, select publicly-listed companies, and the academe.Philippine Women's Economic Network (PhilWEN) Chair, PBCWE Co-Chair and SGV Alumna Partner Ma. Aurora “Boots” D. Geotina-Garcia then moderated the open forum where the participants discussed how their companies set, measure, and report their progress in preparation for sustainability reporting requirements. They also provided insights on how companies can connect workplace gender equality with enhanced Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Standards and shared leading practices to improve Sustainability Reporting Guidelines.Afterwards, PBCWE Executive Director Julia Abad provided a summary of the discussions and delivered the closing remarks.This roundtable dialogue was organized by the PBCWE, PhilWEN, and Investing in Women, an initiative of the Australian Government, with the support from the EU-funded WeEmpowerAsia Programme of UN Women Asia and the Pacific. SGV is a Founding Member of the PBCWE.
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The Korean Chamber of Commerce Philippines (KCCP), in cooperation with SGV’s Korean Business Network (KBN) and the Philippine National Bank (PNB) organized a webinar titled Economic Outlook, CREATE and other Tax Updates. Tax Partners Josenilo G. Mendoza (JGM), Cheryl Edeline C. Ong (CCO) and Reynante M. Marcelo (RMM) participated in the webinar to discuss the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE Act) and transfer pricing regulations. Other speakers included representatives from PNB and the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA). KCCP President Ho Ik Lee delivered the opening remarks and welcomed representatives from member companies of the KCCP. PNB Chief Executive Officer and President Wick A. Velasco opened the discussion of PNB Vice President and Head of Research Alvin Arogo, who provided an overview of the economic outlook of the Philippines amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. TIEZA representatives, Janeth Ocampo and Cate Sta. Clara, then discussed the tourism investment opportunities and relevant areas of the tourism infrastructure project.SGV Chairman and Country Managing Partner Wilson P. Tan (WPT) began the next session, with a message emphasizing the importance of being updated on the newly issued regulations. JGM and CCO then discussed the CREATE Act’s salient features, particularly the income tax rates to be used by domestic and foreign corporations. They also covered other corporate tax adjustments, Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) issuances and the rationalization of fiscal incentives, such as the incentives available to investors and transitory provisions for existing registered activities. WPT during his video message at the webinarRMM then led the discussion on transfer pricing regulations and explained the Transfer Pricing Audit Guidelines under Revenue Audit Memorandum Order No. 1-2019 as well as the forms and documentation required by the BIR. At the end of the session, the SGV KBN team sent electronic copies of the Korean translation of the SGV Tax Bulletin to the participants. The bulletin discusses the important provisions and updates under the CREATE Act.SGV Partners with the other speakers at the webinarSGV Assurance Partner Alvin M. Pinpin (AMP) led the webinar’s organizing team with other members of the SGV KBN team, Manager Roweena Jane Neri and Senior Associate Franchezka Bhea Belarmino. 
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Last 5 August, Consulting Leader Rossana A. Fajardo (RAF) moderated a panel discussion at the eCommerce Asia 2021 Virtual Conference. With the theme Shaping the Future of eCommerce: How to Thrive in 2021 and Beyond, the event gathered key figures from the eCommerce industry to discuss the challenges that the digital future presents to commerce activities.RAF with the other speakers at the sessionUnder the Philippines-focused track, the panel discussion covered the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI’s) eCommerce Philippines Roadmap 2022 and the future opportunities that may arise from the pandemic. RAF began the session with an overview of the roadmap’s agenda which includes the implementation of a National Broadband Plan, Internet Transactions Act, and an MSME digitalization program. The pandemic prompted the DTI to pursue accelerated development of our eCommerce ecosystem, particularly in the area of digital transformation. RAF then explained the state of the country’s business landscape and shared, “While there are many opportunities for first-movers and early adopters in this exciting and dynamic area, it’s important for us to consider the role that each of us can play in shaping the dialogue and contributing to the growth of eCommerce in our country.”The members of the panel included Globe Telecom Director and eCommerce Head MJ Panganiban, Metro Retail Stores Group Inc. Chief Strategy Officer JJ Moreno, and Ace Hardware Philippines Inc. Vice President of Logistics Arnel Gamboa. They spoke on how their respective organizations addressed the challenges and leveraged on the opportunities caused by the pandemic. They also discussed factors that hinder the country from adopting digital eCommerce strategies. To achieve the DTI roadmap by 2030, they emphasized that the country must prioritize fast, reliable, and affordable internet connection; enhance the digital skills and competencies of the workforce; and improve communications and logistics infrastructures. To learn more about the conference, please visit https://asiaecommerce.org/. 
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On 28 July, the Davao City Investment Promotion Center (DCIPC) conducted an online roadshow in partnership with the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP), the Embassy of Sweden in Manila, the Philippine Embassy in Stockholm, and DTI-PTIC Stockholm titled NOW (New Opportunities Waiting) in Davao: Investment and Opportunities for the Swedish Business Community. Around 60 participants attended the event, including Ambassador Harald Fries of the Embassy of Sweden in the Philippines and Ambassador Maria Lumen Isleta of the Philippine Embassy in Stockholm, Swedish entrepreneurs, investors, and other members of the diplomatic corps.Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte delivered the opening remarks and welcomed members of the Swedish business community. She talked about the favorable business environment in the city and its position as an investment hub for manufacturing, technology, agribusiness, and tourism. Christian Cambaya, the head of the Investor Assistance and Servicing Unit of the DCIPC, discussed the 10 Priority Investment Areas of Davao City and the local fiscal and non-fiscal incentives available for qualified investors. JJB and TFM with Mayor Duterte and other speakers and participants at the roadshowSGV Davao Partner-in-Charge Jose Raoul J. Balisalisa (JJB) then introduced the Doing Business in Davao City brochure, a comprehensive guide for potential foreign and local investors looking to set up business operations in the city. Tax Partner Thyrza F. Marbas (TFM) presented the tax and regulatory aspects of doing business in the city and the incentive opportunities relevant to the participants. Afterwards, Service Manager of Atlas Copco Philippines Ramil Villaroman shared insights and strategies on how foreign companies may begin investing in the country.
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SGV Clark conducted a briefing on VAT updates for members of the Clark Investors and Locators Association (CILA) on 6 July. Tax Partners Hentje Leo L. Leaño (LLL) and Margaux A. Advincula (MAA) provided an overview of the development of the VAT provisions under Republic Act No. 11534 or the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act (CREATE Act), and its Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR). They also discussed Revenue Regulations No. 9-2021 and its implications for investors and locators.LLL and MAA with Dr. Villanueva at the CILA webinarAfter the discussion, CILA Past President Dr. Francisco “Frankie” Villanueva provided his reaction on the VAT updates and how these will impact the Clark locators.Around 340 participants, mostly from CILA member companies, attended the session, including CILA President Jeannie Ng and SGV Clark Head and CILA Vice Chair and SGV Partner Jose Pepito E. Zabat (JEZ). Tax Associate Director Michael Ray Lapasaran moderated the session. Tax Associate Brevin Perez assisted the speakers on the preparation of the webinar materials.
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Over 2,500 SGVeans tuned in to the first-ever virtual SGV’s Got Talent competition on 23 July. The event was hosted by TV news anchor and journalist Tina Marasigan. SGV Chairman and Country Managing Partner Wilson P. Tan (WPT) delivered the opening remarks, thanking everyone for their hard work during FY21 and wishing all the finalists the best in their performances. The finalists of SGV’s Got Talent Year 9 during their performancesThe 14 finalists from different market groups presented showstopping performances centered on the theme Rise Up: Resilience Amidst Adversity. The competition’s panel of judges was composed of singer and theater actor Gian Magdangal; singer-songwriter and classically trained soprano Lara Maigue; singer and record producer Johnoy Danao; singer, dancer and model Sheree Bautista; and A-Team PH co-founder and dance director MJ Arda. The celebrity guests also prepared special musical numbers that wowed the audience. WPT, VCR and JOM with the top 3 finalists, Tina and celebrity judgesWPT and Vice Chair and Deputy Managing Partner Vivian C. Ruiz (VCR) then announced the top 3 winners. Consulting Associate Cole Mercado (RKC cluster) was declared the Grand Winner after his inspiring dance performance. Vocal contenders, Tax Associates Rodonna Borasca (MG7-SDS cluster) and Julia Bettina De Guia (FSO-JAB cluster) came in second and third, respectively. Apart from receiving cash prizes, they will also get a chance to perform at the SGV 75th Staff Anniversary celebration. Talent Leader Julie O. Mateo (JOM) announced the other finalists who made it into the Top 7 (in no particular order): Noreen Grace Vitug (MG6-EAP cluster), Jeemo Tabuzo (MG2-JFA cluster), Kimberly Gonzales (MG1-CVM cluster) and duo Madelene Dones and Diana Araracap (MG6-PBH cluster) who received consolation prizes. Congratulations to all our winners and finalists!
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SGV’s Consulting Team, led by Consulting Partner Allan W. Ocho (AWO), were among the presenters at the ISACA Manila Virtual Conference. Speakers included Consulting Leader Rossana A. Fajardo (RAF), Senior Directors Aileen Uy and Alvin Manuel, and Directors Kristian Anthony Reyes and Ma. Isabel Herrera. They discussed EY’s Trust by Design methodology and SGV’s third-party risk management practice. They also provided an overview of program risk management, cybersecurity, governance, risk and compliance, internal audit and service organization controls.AWO with the presenters and organizing team of the ConferenceDuring the plenary session, RAF led a discussion on Transformative Leadership focused on creating long-term value by harnessing the power of people, technology and innovation. She noted that the pandemic has encouraged leaders to build greater trust in their organizations, setting a credible vision of the future and guidance on how that vision can be achieved. Trust also enables leaders to make bold strategic moves and seize opportunities in times of disruption. Lastly, she talked about purpose-driven leadership and encouraged participants to uphold their professional and personal values. RAF presenting at the ConferenceThe ISACA Manila Conference is an annual event developed for IT governance, risk management, assurance and security professionals. SGV’s and the Consulting team’s participation in the event helped to orient participants on the Firm’s services and solutions related to IT governance. The sessions concluded with a Q&A portion where the speakers addressed the participants’ questions. The event’s organizing team included Senior Associates Christine Karen Capili and Marigin Fidel, and Associate Ralph Crimuel Roxas.
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CCaSS serves as Technical Adviser of 2021 Europa AwardsSGV’s Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) Team, led by Partner Benjamin N. Villacorte (BNV) and Manager Diana Sadili, served as Technical Adviser in the development of the scoring framework for the European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines (ECCP)2021 Europa Awards. The Awards recognized organizations for their outstanding sustainability efforts and initiatives in line with global standards and the Philippine Development Plan. Organizations were nominated across six categories: Smart and Safe Mobility, Clean and Efficient Energy, Circular Economy, Sustainable Food and Nutrition, Green and Inclusive Financial Solutions, and Water Resource Management.BNV with ECCP Officers and Europa Award nomineesThe Team also served as the official tabulator of the awarding ceremony held last 11 June. The team conducted an independent tabulation of scores cast by the judges and the rankings of the finalists and winners of the Awards. The winners were chosen based on their sustainability strategy and culture, innovation, sustainability partnership and sustainability impact. To learn more about the Europa Awards, visit 2021 Europa Awards (eccp.com).BNV speaks at LCF CSR Conference and Expo Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) Partner Benjamin N. Villacorte (BNV) led a session on creating long-term value to future-proof corporate social responsibility at the first-ever virtual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Conference and Expo hosted by the League of Corporate Foundations (LCF) last 8 July. With the theme Rebuilding Together with the Changing Landscape of CSR, the expo featured sessions on the role CSR plays in driving long-term integrated and sustainable social efforts in times of global crisis and beyond.BNV and host, Ron Cruz, at the CSR Conference and ExpoBNV discussed the need to future-proof a company’s CSR efforts, citing the recent shift in societal, investor and corporate leadership priorities. He explained how companies can redefine their corporate purpose through sustainable development founded on economic, environmental, social and governance factors. He then shared insights and case studies on how participants can build trust within their organizations and deliver long-term and integrated value to their stakeholders.CCaSS Associate Director presents at DOST-ITDI webinarClimate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) Associate Director Diana Sadili was a resource speaker at a webinar on sustainability hosted by the Department of Science and Technology–Industrial Technology Development Institute (DOST–ITDI) last 16 July. She spoke to members of the DOST’s Regional Food Innovation Center (FIC) project team and discussed sustainable food systems, sustainable innovation and relevant sustainability models and tools.Diana with participants of the webinarEEstablished in each region of the country, the DOST–FIC serves as a hub for food innovations, research and development, and support services, particularly on fresh produce and processed food. The FIC also aims to integrate sustainability and sustainable innovation into its operations and processes, helping reduce the impact of climate change.