Pinay makes it to Top 5 in Dutch BiD Challenge


More Filipina women make a difference, not just in the home, but in the realm of business and are contributing more and more to today’s innovations and creations. So hold on to your hard hats, boys. Beyonce may just be on to something when she asks, “Who run the world?”

For the second year in a row, another Filipina has made it to the global online business plan competition Business in Development (BiD) Challenge international marketplace, primarily for women entrepreneurs who have made a difference in combining profit and helping reduce poverty in the world’s developing nations.

This time, she will be among the five finalists of the second edition of the BiD Women in Business Challenge to be awarded in the Netherlands within the next couple of weeks.

The only one representing Asia, this Filipina entrepreneur will compete with two entries from Peru representing Latin America, and two other entries from Uganda representing Africa, plus a special runner-up entry from Afghanistan.

Today, her name will be officially unveiled at the Rockwell Tent in Makati City during the announcement by the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) and Citibank of the winners in the local leg of the 2010 BiD Challenge Philippines entries.

For the 2009 entries who were awarded in 2010, a costume jewelry designer based in Naga, Camarines Sur won the special BiD Women in Retail Business Challenge in The Hague, the Netherlands, wherein among her prizes included €10,000 from Dutch financial group ING.

Marianne Olano of Baycrafts – manufacturer of handcrafted costume jewelry made from indigenous and synthetic materials such as pearls, wood, fiber, seeds, crystals, and glass – will be one of the keynote speakers at the PBSP-Citibank BiD Challenge Philippines 2010 marketplace and awarding ceremony this Monday at the Rockwell in Makati.

Also during the first edition of the BiD Women in Business Challenge (2009-2010), a partnership of two Filipina entrepreneurs specializing in ecologically friendly toys made from wooden blocks became a finalist together with two entries from India and one from Colombia.

Called eco-friendly toys for children, Ecobloks used scrap mahogany and pine wood to produce unpainted, lead-free, environmentally friendly building blocks for children.

In the process, the 2009 Philippine entry of business partners Maria Lourdes Molina from Loot Fairy Toys and Cebu-based Maria Mina Lacson thereby helped idle woodworkers and found use for wood scrap from wooden slippers and furniture makers.

Their competitors at the Fokker Terminal of The Hague on June 2 last year included the Women on Wheels safe transport solutions project based in New Delhi, and another Indian entry called Aqua Beauty Salon specializing in the use of domestic wastewater treatment solutions.

The Latin American entry last year, Micro Tapas, was a unique Colombian product called a micro-cover that protects a woman’s areola and nipple areas from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun, while allowing the tanning of the other areas of the breast.

For the BiD Women in Business Challenge 2010-2011, the finalists are expected to “get access to a network of more than 36,000 like-minded entrepreneurs, coaches, and investors” from all over the world, as well as “win tailor-made advisory services worth €5,000 from UnitedSucces, the worldwide network for business women owners.”

As of the latest update last Friday (27 May), the final event for the 2010-2011 Women in Business Challenge will be held on 9 June 2011 at Pakhuis de Zwijger in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Of the two Peruvian finalists, who both submitted their business plan in the Spanish language, one focuses on granular organic fertilizers to cultivate coffee and cocoa, while the other specializes in dried golden berry as an organic snack.

Meanwhile, one of the Ugandan finalists promotes locally available materials to produce eco paper bags for packaging purposes.  The other develops and maintains what it claims to be the largest and most interactive online business community website platform in Africa connecting people and businesses to the global market.

The special Afghan runner-up entry is a cardboard manufacturing plan application which it said would encourage environmental protection, decrease the incidence of diseases, and even promote education from the capital city of Kabul to the province of Herat.

And as for the Pinay entry who made it to the 2010-2011 BiD Women in Business Challenge, everyone is invited to pass by Rockwell Makati on May 30 for the unveiling.

Teaser/clue: She aims to improve the living standards of a specific group of staple crop farmers in Southern Central Mindanao.