Tony Tompar: Cebu’s water king
Ehda M.Dagooc (The Freeman) - June 4, 2018 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — His name always strikes a chord whenever issues or even good news about water come into surface. Though, Antonio Camelo P. Tompar's company, Mactan Rock, is not the largest, but it managed to demand popularity not only in Cebu, but in almost every corner of the Philippines.

Mactan Rock Industries Inc., (MRII) is one of the few water bulk suppliers and water technology providers in the country that champions the provision of ample water supply, especially in the small islands and provinces, where basic needs like water is difficult and expensive to source.

But its success as part of the development enabler in growing number of towns, provinces, islands and even major cities, is one thing that makes MRII floats amid rough ride in the water business in the Philippines.

Man on top

Even as a child, Tony already knew that he has to be on top in whatever he is doing in order to touch a dream — big or small. It has always been that way, he said.

As the youngest in the family, Tony experienced to get only the "leftovers" in family perks, including his studies.

Although his parents were both professionals, Tony had to deny his right to be sent to prestigious schools like his other siblings, to give way to his elder sister, who was taking up medicine that time.

The unassuming boy from Asturias who would later on become one of Cebu's most prominent businessmen, even had to work his way through college to earn a degree.

He graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of San Carlos in 1974 and passed the licensure examination in 1988.

Reaching the pinnacle of his college dream proved Tony's ability to be on top of everything he does.

The rock

Ironically, Tony started his trip into business route by converting rocks into decorative tiles. In the 70s, this industry was making money in the island of Mactan. The young Tony played his cards and invested in this business, together with friends in college.

A naturally people-person with sweeping wit, Tony made good friends in his college days, who then became his partners to maneuver the strange territory of business.

In 1983, Tony decided to set up his own business, Mactan Rock Industries, Inc. (MRII), with the help of friends who have remained his business partners until today.

Armed with his wealth of experience learned from the nine years of engineering practice, the company made strides in the chemical business. Until his winning attitude caught the attention of a US-based company, and its President convinced Tony to introduce water softener in the Philippines. That was 1986, three years after the rock-tile manufacturing MRII was established.

Water king

While the US company helped Tony and his company MRII made significant breaks in the water business in the Philippines, it was Tony's innate persistence and confidence that sustained this Cebu-based water company even until now.

By far, Tony is the only visible and fearless businessman who is in the water business who is willing to challenge the giants and conglomerates with way too deeper pockets.

His consistent stance to defend his company and protect the rights of the people to consume clean water affordably, earned Tony the moniker "Water King."

Challenged by different ordeals in life in various forms, intensity, texture, (including death threats), Tony said he has nothing to fear at this stage of his life.

He is resolved to live a life of kingship. Like a true king Tony protects his kingdom until the end.

From working with LGUs around the country in helping local executives and water districts to maximize their water resources — either from river, deep well, rain water and even from sea-water, to helping industries to lessen their cost of consuming water and treat their waste-water for other uses — these are all part of his "kingdom."

Posture of success

A long time president and chairman of Philippine Society Mechanical Engineer (PSME), president of Philippine Environment Management Professional Association, Pollution Control Association of the Philippines Inc., Alpha Sigma Philippines International Collegiate Service Organizations Inc., Abellana National High School Alumni Association Inc., and Cebu City Central School Alumni Association.

For his dedication to the mechanical engineering profession and the society, Tony is a walking testimony of success largely capitalized with charm, hardwork, wit, and persistence.

In his low and high seasons, Tony always projects a posture of success—a simple life secret everyone should try and experience.  In times of shrewed business competition, Tony advised that while money helps, what gives a kick for success is how a person projects himself — "online and offline"

Which means, holding a belief in your heart that never wavers.

It all starts with persistence, hard work and a mindset and posture of success. And everything flows after — just like water. (FREEMAN)

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