Teodorico T. Haresco, Jr., in his recent Chaikofi branch inauguration, was the man of the hour. Popular social, business and political personalities, nay celebrities, thronged to the new, more pleasant watering hole in Metro Manila’s social scene. Celebrities were pleasantly honored to shake hands with the man. For Haresco is no mere coffee shop owner but one who has risen from the ranks of micro-entrepreneurs to new heights of global achievers. The ink on his recognition in the Philippine business world has hardly dried, even as he recently won the coveted Businessman of the Year Pearl Award for 2006 from the prestigious Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI). Over that, his contribution to national economic development through the President’s Bridge Program is rather immeasurable.
But unlike other prominent figures, the technocrat in Haresco prefers to let his achievements speak for themselves. He has structured new business enterprises and is at present Chairman for WinAce Holdings Philippines, Inc., mother corporation of several subsidiaries which he also chairs: Winsource Solutions, Inc., a call center and business outsourcing corporation; Winace Land Development Corp., Inc.; Boracay Land Group, Inc.; Chaikofi Corp.; Technostrat Corp.; Winserve Risk Management Consultants, Inc.; and R.T. Haresco & Associates, Inc. Pivotal to his business standing is his affiliation for more than a decade with Mabey & Johnson, the British engineering firm which manufactures the modular, prefabricated bridge panels for the President’s Bridge Program (PBP).As if to point out that is not in his vocabulary, he sketchily pointed out that in five months, the 50-seats Winsource Call Center and BPO easily emerged with 500 agents, the foreign sounding Chaikofi franchise of local creation opened three outlets in eight months and in three years, the property value of his moving Boracay venture quadrupled.
It is on his pivolate role in the President’s Bridge Program that scores him best. No less than 1,500 modular steel bridges have been built all over the Philippines. His handling of this bridge program has earned him a listing in the book British Legacy in the Philippines along with Jose Rizal, Fidel V. Ramos and President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo as “one of the Filipinos who have made monumental contributions to national economic growth”. But the man is far from finished with his work. “There is more to do,” Haresco declares. “I did only 1,500 bridges and our country needs 14,000. Competition is most welcomed, especially from other donor countries.”
Haresco continues: “Right now, we have a program called “Tulay ng Pangulo sa Magsasaka” that’s building 453 bridges all over the country where there are agrarian reform communities. The national government spends 12 billion pesos a year on the agrarian reform communities for irrigation, technical inputs, fertilizer, etc., but it’s only now government can afford to link these communities to market, thus, further spur countryside growth.”
To illustrate the point, he gives an example to consider: “To transport a cavan of rice without the benefit of a bridge, it takes five pesos to go down into the ravine, 20 pesos to cross the river, five pesos again to go up the other side of the ravine, and another 20 pesos for the tricycle ride. So altogether, about 50 pesos transport cost. That’s just about the surplus income that our average rice or corn farmer will earn if he planted more to sell. So, the farmers are thinking – why will I plant more? Wala naman akong kikitain. (I will not earn anything.) I might as well plant just enough for my family. But the moment you build a bridge, you free large numbers of Filipinos from the poverty trap, allowing them to escape from extreme isolation. In Cauayan, Isabela, we built a bridge, which opened about 2,000 hectares. The farmers had a surplus production of 200,000 cavans. The mayor was happy, tumaas ang amelioria niya (his property taxes went up), everybody’s happy, people are buying TV sets, tricycles and vehicles.
Winace Holdings Philippines, Inc
Winace Holdings Philippines, Inc. (WINACE) is a corporation duly registered under the country’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Chaired by Teodorico Haresco, one of the Philippine’s prominent businessmen, it is actively involved in the acquisition, holding, and sale of stocks, bonds, and securities of other companies for investment purposes.