Disney, 2 others eye Philippine venture

Delon Porcalla (The Philippine Star) - February 18, 2016 - 9:00am

LOS ANGELES – Three global companies based here have expressed interest in doing more business in the Philippines and conveyed such plans during their executives’ meeting with President Aquino Tuesday.

“All three companies signified to the President their top-of-mind preference for the Philippines as an investment venue and source of high-quality talent and for Philippine organizations as business partners,” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said.

He was referring to Walt Disney International, Western Digital Corp., and Architecture, Engineering, Consulting, Operations and Maintenance (AECOM).

Aquino attended the two-day US-ASEAN Summit in California.

In a note sent to Manila-based journalists who covered Aquino’s attendance to the special summit, Coloma related that Walt Disney “chairperson Andy Bird told the President that there are possibilities for tapping into the robust talent pool of creative Filipinos.”

There are several talented Filipinos in Walt Disney’s pool, among them Ronnie del Carmen, co-director of Pixar’s Inside Out; Bobby Pontillas, one of the animators for Disney’s Frozen; Armand Serrano, visual development artist for Walt Disney Animation Studio who worked on Mulan, Tarzan, and Big Hero 6; and Gini Santos, one of the animators for Pixar’s The Incredibles.

At the same time, Bird also cited Walt Disney’s commercial partnerships with big Philippine corporations such as the SM Group and Globe Telecom.

Aquino thanked WDC for employing over 10,000 Filipinos in its Philippine operations in various fields including manufacturing, engineering, quality, information technology, finance, site operations, human resources, and supply chain management.

Stephen Milligan, WDC chief executive officer, told Aquino that since 1994, their company has been a “highly satisfied locator” in the country’s export zones, on account of the excellent support provided by the Philippine Export Zone Authority.

AECOM, for its part, employs 1,230 Filipinos in its global operations and over 1,000 more in its Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Philippine operations, according to Coloma.

Michael Donnely, group president for AECOM’s Enterprise Growth Solutions; Alma Madrazo, Philippines country leader; and Hugh Doyle, president for international development pledged to continue to participate actively in large infrastructure projects in the Philippines, Coloma said.

AECOM recently won the Clark Green City design competition. It is also involved in, among others, the Mactan-Cebu International Airport passenger terminal building private-public partnership (PPP) project as concept designer; the Burgos wind and solar power project in Ilocos Norte which is the biggest wind power facility in Southeast Asia; and the Chevron Pandacan terminal decommissioning project.

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