Friday, February 24, 2017

Nestle: Start Healthy, Stay Healthy Campaign

Last year, we celebrated the birthday of my great aunt, Mama Sefa (Josefa) who is already 103 years old! With her age she already out-lived all of her older siblings, several nieces and even nephews and some grand children. My mom, asked her what’s her secret to long life, and she said - “Healthy living.”


In the last fifty years, it was very noticeable on how life span of man became shorter due to various illnesses. I remember when I was young, the news of a death of someone who died of cancer at a very young age was relatively rare and shocking. Today, the big – C has become a very common cause of death among many people of their younger years, and cancer has evolved in many forms as well. 



In the advancement of technology to keep up with the fast pace of living, the “fast food” industry has become the staple sustenance of many people of today. As modern research shows, many of the common illnesses are traced back to poor diet and lifestyle and many of these processed foods are the culprit in many life-threatening diseases such as diabetes, heart diseases and cancer. Even with the advancement of modern medicine, it seems that viruses and bacteria causing diseases are always one step ahead of the latest drugs available to combat them. 


Nestle, a leading food and beverage company that is noted for its brands in the field of health and nutrition advocates healthy living among new mothers and soon-to-be-mothers early on in their pregnancy. The first 1,000 days, according to medical experts is very critical in the life not just for the baby but also for the mother herself. This means that proper health and nutrition of a child expands from conception up to the baby’s second birthday, covering the first 1,000 days. 

  
A good nutrition in the first 1,000 days helps prevent Microcephaly, a condition where the brains of a child did not developed normally, thus having a smaller head. This and other health anomalies during the early stages of the child’s life can be controlled or prevented within the first 1,000 days of good nutrition. Mothers on the other hand will likewise have better chances of not getting illnesses but will have more reserve energy and be healthy in all aspect of her early stage of motherhood.


Nestle a keen advocate to this health philosophy launches a website that will help guide new moms and moms to be on how to sustain a good and healthy living during their first 1,000 days journey. The site covers all the semesters in child baring up to where the child celebrates his or her second birthday. With this campaign, Nestle pursue to spearhead a conscious and committed efforts in improving the health and quality of life of new breeds of Filipinos free from death causing illnesses and live fulfilling lives that perhaps may extends to more than a hundred years.

Visit and Register:

For more information on nurturing a generation of healthier and happier Filipinos, visit the website at www.starthealthy.nestle.com.ph and follow Nestle Start Healthy Stay Healthy – PH on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sun Life Foresees Continued Strength Growth of Philippine Economy

Less than a year in the Duterte administration, the Philippines experienced an unprecedented social divide that brought a phenomenal cultural revolution that expands to all social classes and sectors of the society. In the advent of internet technology and social media, all of us became witnesses on how perceptions of people determine the probable outcome of a state of a nation. 


So, here we are, after seven months under the new government, Filipino people are bearing the loads of realities on our backs such as an atmosphere of social unrest being felt by many brought about by the government’s unorthodox approach on its “war on drugs” campaign, wide spread corruptions in the executive office and legislative body, scandalous issues in the PNP ranks, and some fragile issues on diplomatic relationships with other countries, just to name a few. 


While all these are happening, peoples' confidence in our economy is put on a rigid test. Had the used-to-be “Sickly Man of Asia” truly recovered from his illness and indeed became the fastest growing economy in the region that's strong enough to support investments or have we just experienced a relapse and regressed to a state where our economy has gone from bad to worse?


Apparently, big players in the business are showing no signs of weariness despite the steady decline on stocks and weakening of the Philippine peso over the dollar. But, for small time investors like me, how should I react to these scenarios? Should I pullout everything and look at venturing into European markets? With my limited knowledge of how our domestic market will play in the next months or years, it is helpful to seek wisdom and hopefully find solace from the experts. 


Recently, the Sun Life Asset Management Company, Inc. (SLAMCI) organized an intimate gathering of members of the media to present the current financial “State-of-the-Nation”. Mr. Michael Enriquez, Sun Life Chief Investment Officer, explained that with a continuous increase in consumer and government spending, the outlook remains fundamentally positive. "Remittances from overseas Filipino workers, the BPO industry, and the large number of Filipinos who are of working age are among the factors boosting our economy from the consumer’s end. On the other hand, the rise on government spending is bringing more jobs and has also increased the demand for construction materials," he said.



According to Mr. Enriquez, these so called positive developments are offsetting the impact of recent events in the market, including the weakening of the PH peso against the US Dollar and the drop in the Philippines Stock Exchange Index due to the shift of foreign funds to the US market. Further on, he encourages small-scale investors to stay the course, even boost their investments, and look further for a long-term season of investments. Since the stock prices are cheaper, it is the best time to buy to enjoy greater gains once the market goes up and recovers. 



One investment tool people should consider is investing in mutual funds such as the Sun Life Prosperity Funds, managed by SLAMCI. Historically, the Sun Life Prosperity Funds have been performing strongly despite the given scenarios in the market. The Sun Life Equity Fund for one, has gained a five-year return of 39% and a 10-year return of 119%, while Sun Life Prosperity Balanced Fund marked a 28% and 89% growth in the five and 10 year return respectively; the and the Sun Life Prosperity Bond Fund lodged a 12% and 44% return for the same duration. The said figures is as of December 31, 2016.

So what does all these percentages mean to a small scale investor? According to Sun Life finance experts, basing on their technical parameters, our economy is still holding strong and investors of these financial tools are reaping relatively promising gains still. These revenues are results of a sound economic growth, perhaps brought about by the infusion of reserves that was left by the previous administration and the locked in tenures of foreign investments in our country.  On the technical side, these factors would equate to a relatively good statistics in the next coming months.

However, numbers and statistics may tell us promising futures but realistically, many would still hold on to their resources and seek a lesser risk taking investments instead. Given the overall present state of our country today, financial and investment decisions should be made with thorough analysis. SLAMCI advises investors not to take drastic steps due to “fear of the unknown”. Instead, we are all encouraged everyone to invest long term because Sun Life believes and are confident that things would get better sooner than we expected. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

A really Good Time at Gringo…

“Gringo” is a Mexican term referred to a foreigner, particularly a “White American”. Having this in mind, one can have an idea of what Gringo (the resto) is quite famous for. They offer a wide range of Mexican/American dishes with its world’s famous Southern spices that comes in two sizzling hot and spicy variants. 



Last week, another branch was opened at the third level atrium of SM Mega Mall and I had the opportunity to be invited in their launch. A pleasant ambiance will be felt as the friendly staff greeted everyone – Hola! Gringo, despite its few branches, it has become a favorite hangout of the typical pinoy barkada and families who crave and enjoy delectable dishes.


According to restaurateur Mr. Reagan Tan, “Gringo is a friend we all wish to have. He host the best get togethers, along with his closest amigos and cooks up one mean Mexican-Latin feast”. Historically, the Philippines and Mexico has a long standing relationship, the food of Gringo is something that is very comfortable in the tastes of many Filipinos. Many of the dishes served were very similar to the ones we all enjoy as Filipinos."
 

These delicious foods are made extra special with the Southern Spices only Gringo can bring. The flavors also bring the old American-southern style of cooking which are evident in their grilled foods such as the Baby Back Ribs and grilled chicken. Many of its dishes are inspired by the Cajun Southern style smoky flavors with its original herbs and spices.


Sea foods are also something to try at Gringo. One dish that made a mark is the Crispy Catfish Salsa which is also deboned, and this one goes best with the Gringo spicy sauce, and Mexican Garlic Rice. So, what makes the garlic rice Mexican? It’s the tomato sauce that is added into it, of course! A side dish of Mushroom Garlic also very satisfying.


The food is made as you order and it will take a while before you enjoy it. While waiting, a recommended starters can be a Clam Chowder Soup with flaky pastry bread which is so delicious and a plate of Baked Mussels. Of course A Mexican restaurant would not be called to be one without Nachos with Salsa dressings. 



Thursday, January 26, 2017

Center for Possibilities Promotes Inclusion through the Arts



“I’m not blind, but I can’t always see,
  I’m not deaf but things could sounds strange to me
  I’m not trapped but it’s hard to feel free.
               Imagine what it’s like to be me.”

These are just an excerpts from the song “Through My Eyes” written by Ms. Valerie Foley. It is a creative description of what a person with autism actually experience. Autism is a complex developmental disability that affects a person’s communication and social skills. 

Samantha Kaspar - Visual Artist
The global population indicates that there are about 1 million people has Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or simply Autism. However in the Philippines, as much as there are many medical societies are now involved in giving support to Filipinos with such disorder, proper diagnosis in many parts of the country limits our medical experts to present an accurate local statistics on cases of autism because of the lack of many poor families access to the basic health and medical treatment.

Ms. Dolores Cheng, Founder, Center Possibilities Foundation Inc.
The Center for Possibilities Foundation is a non-government organization that offers support to individuals and families which are directly affected with various disabilities. Part of their advocacy is the creation of Special Education (SPED) Centers in remote provinces to cater marginalized communities to address the needs of members of the community that has special disabilities. 

Samantha, working on another masterpiece...
Disability is what medical books would label people with autism. But many of them shares extra-ordinary talents even some ordinary people would find it difficult achieving. And one talented sweet girl is Samantha, a 19 year old virtuoso in visual arts. 

With her works ready for auction...
Samantha is a Swiss-Filipino and the only daughter of Chef Martin and Mitzi kaspar. At an early age she was diagnosed with Autism which limits her from going to regular schooling. However, her parents relentlessly sought her potentials through therapy and other form of special education and found that she has the ability to express her creativity through painting. Her art works have varied themes, with no central them tying them together. She gets inspiration from the things around her, from places she visited and things she have engaged with. 

Shoals and runners. Fabric painting 
Her gift in visual arts was given special attention when she and eight other artist from Fashion Arts Autism (FAAB) held an art exhibit entitled Chef’s Art and Hearts, where Samantha’s works were sold out in the event. More opportunities soon came when Samantha was given the invitation to feature her work in the up coming World Autism Awareness Day of the United Nation on April 3-7, 2017 in New York. From their, the works of Samantha will be featured in a fashion show organized by Autism Hearts Foundation, where in they will collaborate with Filipino designers (Patis Tesoro and Anthony Legarda); Samantha together with eight other artist will come up with the designs, which partner designers will subsequently translate into clothes. 

Manila Symphony Orchestra Conductor Prof. Arturo Molina
On January 28, 2017, the Center for Possibilities Foundation (CFP) will be organizing a back-to-back event at RCBC Plaza in Makati City at 5:30 in the afternoon, the self titles exhibit of Samantha kaspar and the proceeds of the art auction will be used to fund her trip to New York. And later in the evening, the Manila Symphony Orchestra will take center stage in a mini-concert featuring repertoire form the hits of John Williams and other great musical legends such as Beethoven, Mozart and Bach. The proceeds of the concert will go to the funding of SPED Centers created by Center for Possibilities Foundation. These initiatives are just some of the projects of the foundation to promote public awareness about Autism and how ordinary people can at least have a glimpse of how people like Samantha deal with such condition.

To know more about CFP, and how you can help its cause, you may reach them through http://centerfor possibilities.asia/ or (02) 723-1242 / (0918) 888-1759.




Tuesday, January 17, 2017

7-Eleven Run 2017 to be the Biggest and Most Exciting Race of the Series Yet

PRESS RELEASE:

Manila, Philippines – December 6, 2016 – From attracting serious runners to recreational walkers all over the country, 7-Eleven Philippines' hugely popular Run Series will once again take over Skyway and Filinvest City on February 5, 2017 for a day of fitness, family, freebies and all out fun.

The 7-Eleven Run Series has been gaining momentum since it started in 2013. With more than 12
thousand participants last year, Run 2017 promises to be the biggest and most exciting of the series yet! 

7-11 Run 2016 with its 12,000 runners...
Run 2017 will feature eight categories for runners to choose from. The 42KM, 21KM, 16KM, 10KM, and 10KM Buddy Run categories will see participants sweeping through Filinvest City and the Skyway, while the 5KM, 3KM and 500M Kids Run will be held along Filinvest City. 

21k runners...
Three winners in each category will be announced on the race day and will receive cash prizes and
medals. In addition to this, the top three Filipino males and females in the 42KM and 21KM categories will be sponsored by 7-Eleven Philippines to compete in an international marathon in Asia, all expenses paid. Finally, the top three organizations with the highest number of registrants will receive a special trophy.

Everyone love running at the Skyway...
Runners can also get a chance to earn free race kits through 7-Eleven’s CliQQ loyalty program. CliQQ app users and Every Day! Rewards cardholders can redeem a free race kit by earning Run e-Stamps. Run e-Stamps are earned with every P100 purchase of any participating item from the major sponsors. 

Runners finishing strong at the Finish line...
 Every purchase of a booster product also earns one additional e-Stamp. To redeem a free race kit to any race category , customers must earn 50 e-Stamps (except for 10K Buddy Run, where customers must earn 100 e-Stamps).  

Podium finishers...

 Registration is now open! Visit www.run711.com for more info. Registration is until January 18, 2017. Race Kits can be claimed on the date indicated on the receipt, from the same store where payment has been made. Aside from the exciting freebies that customers can look forward to on race day, all registrants of Run 2017 will also receive an Asics 20% discount voucher.

Be sure to follow the 7-Eleven Run Series Facebook Page(www.facebook.com/run711) for updates!
Runners can also join in on the conversation using the official hashtag, #711Run2017! 

7-Eleven Run 2017 is held in partnership with Skyway and Filinvest City, as well as event partners,
Connect, Mogu Mogu, Crimson Hotel, and exclusive sportswear partner, Asics.The event is also brought to you by Safeguard, Selecta, Pocari Sweat, Del Monte, Nature’s Spring, Dole, Powerade and Summit Water, and media partners Solar Sports, ETC, CNN Philippines, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Manila Bulletin, The Philippine Star, Summit Media, Hinge Inquirer Publishing, and ABS-CBN Publishing,

Friday, January 13, 2017

Kaspersky Lab presents new version of its flagship consumer security solution with enhanced data protection features

PRESS RELEASE:

Kaspersky Lab has presented the new version of its flagship security solution Kaspersky Internet Security, which provides users with additional opportunities to manage their Internet protection and to ensure their data safety. 


Kaspersky Internet Security is the security solution for the whole family; it protects Windows, Mac, and Android users against malware, dangerous sites, online tracking, fraud and money theft.

This year Kaspersky Lab products for Windows have integrated several new functions. Now users can protect their data from being intercepted during an unsafe Internet connection with the help of Secure Connection. In addition, they can patch potential "holes" in their device security with Software Updater and Software Cleaner.



"At Kaspersky Lab we believe that IT security is not only about the effectiveness of a security solution. It is also about the user’s own cyber savviness. Cyber savvy people behave carefully and watchfully online, and they are also ready to apply the latest technological achievements to protect what is most important for them – whether that’s personal information, files, privacy, their devices or peace of mind for their family members. We are striving to offer the user these possibilities with each new version of our solutions", commented Sylvia Ng, General Manager at Kaspersky Lab Southeast Asia.

Secure Connection

Secure Connection allows users to connect to the Internet safely, by encrypting all data sent and received through the network. This is especially important when performing financial operations, authorization on sites, or transferring confidential information, as in these cases traffic interception by a stranger could cause users serious (for example, financial) losses.

This function is especially useful while traveling, when many people are increasingly connecting to insecure Wi-Fi networks to stay in touch. 



According to the Kaspersky Lab study, every fifth (18%) user has fallen victim to cybercriminals when traveling. This is not surprising considering the fact that – what a coincidence! – one in five (18%) travelers does not take any steps to protect them online. Secure Connection is now a necessary protection measure when connecting to a public Wi-Fi.

The Kaspersky Lab protection component, Secure Connection, can be launched from the main window of Kaspersky Internet Security. It can also be activated automatically when the device is connected to public Wi-Fi or the user is inputting confidential information online, such as on banking websites, online stores, payment systems, e-mail, social networks, etc.

Within the security product’s license, users have 200 MB of encrypted traffic at their daily disposal, and for an additional monthly or annual fee they can get an unlimited volume of traffic.

Software Updater

One of the common methods of malware penetrating the computer is the use of errors (so-called vulnerabilities) in the programs installed on it. Developers regularly update their products, however not all users regularly update these on their devices.

Software Updater can automatically find the applications that need to be updated and, if the user agrees, install the latest versions from vendor sites on their computer. The user can also request the update of an application manually or add any of them to the list of applications that should not be updated (for example, if the older version is required).


Software Cleaner

According to the Kaspersky Lab study, 37% of users store programs that they do not use on their device. In addition to the fact that this overloads the device memory, it also provides extra opportunities for cybercriminals to penetrate the system.

Software Cleaner scans all applications installed on the computer and marks those posing potential risk. Users sometimes do not even know about these applications being installed on their devices or are unaware of their negative effects.

Software Cleaner will inform users of a program if it has been installed without their awareness or clear consent (for example, as additional software during the installation of another application), or if it slows down the user’s device, provides incomplete/incorrect information about its functions, operates in the background mode, shows banners and messages without permission (e.g., advertising), or is rarely used.

Upon receipt of a report from Software Cleaner, the user can either remove or leave the application in question.

In addition to the new functions, Kaspersky Internet Security has been enhanced with improved advanced technologies such as the multi-level protection of financial transactions (with Safe Money), the prevention of the installation of unwanted applications (with Application Manager, part of the former Change Control feature) and the blocking of advertising banners in the browser (with Anti-Banner).

“Filipinos are heavy mobile and internet users. Filipinos are also known as one of the most active social media users. Through social engineering or hacking of the human mind, careless and unaware Filipinos could be easy prey for cybercriminals. Kaspersky Lab Internet Security 2017 is equipped with new features designed to protect Filipinos and their devices. But more than installing an awesome security product on a device, being cyber savvy online matters the most. It is highly important to behave carefully online. Think security at all times,” adds Anthony Chua, Business Development Manager for the Philippines and Singapore at Kaspersky Lab Southeast Asia.

About Kaspersky Lab

Kaspersky Lab is a global cybersecurity company founded in 1997. Kaspersky Lab’s deep threat intelligence and security expertise is constantly transforming into security solutions and services to protect businesses, critical infrastructure, governments and consumers around the globe. The company’s comprehensive security portfolio includes leading endpoint protection and a number of specialized security solutions and services to fight sophisticated and evolving digital threats. Over 400 million users are protected by Kaspersky Lab technologies and we help 270,000 corporate clients protect what matters most to them. Learn more at www.kaspersky.com.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

HOOQ SHINES SPOTLIGHT ON THE BEST OF FILIPINO CINEMA AT THE 42ND METRO MANILA FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS NIGHT

HOOQ, Asia’s largest video-on-demand service, furthers its commitment in uplifting the quality of Filipino movies as it remained the exclusive presenter of the 42nd Metro Manila Film Festival and its New Wave category.

(From L-R) Jane Walker, HOOQ Country Manager, Jeff Remigio, HOOQ Director of Content, Shiela Paul, HOOQ Marketing head
“In a year marked by big changes in the MMFF, we are proud to say that our full support for the premiere movie festival in the country has remained the same,” said Jane Cruz-Walker, HOOQ Philippines Country Manager.  “We welcome another year of partnership with the Metro Manila Film Festival, and we are proud to be part of the festival as it takes brave new steps in focusing on quality films, fresh casting choices and new approaches to filmmaking.” 

Mr. Thomas Orbos, MMFF's Over-all Chairman
In his speech, Metro Manila Development Authority Thomas Orbos said, “We are gathered here together not only to seek change but also to look back to the original theme of the MMFF which is to be a festival that celebrates Filipino artistic excellence. Change is never easy, it is a difficult path, but thanks to the MMFF Executive Committee we are here today amidst change. We believe that what we did with the MMFF this year may not be recognized now, but it will be appreciated by future generations. It is not about the money, it is about what we can give to our children later on by promoting quality films in the Philippines.”

Casts of ORO


WINNERS AND STARS OF THE NIGHT
Erik Matti’s Seklusyon proved to be the big winner at the 42ND METRO MANILA FILM FESTIVAL GABI NG PARANGAL held December 29, 2016 at the Kia Theater, Araneta Center, Cubao, Quezon City.

Best Supporting Actress, Phoebe Walker of Seklusyon
The movie brought home eight awards including Best Director for Erik Matti; Best Supporting Actress  Phoebe Walker; Special Jury Prize Rhed Bustamante;  Best Screenplay; Best Sound; Best Production Design; Best Cinematography and Best Theme Song for Dominus Miserere.Sunday Beauty Queen, the very first documentary to be included in the annual festival was chosen as Best Picture.

Best Picture is Sunday Beauty Queen

Irma Adlawan won the coveted Best Actress category for the movie Oro, while Paolo Ballesteros was chosen as Best Actor for his performance in ¬Die Beautiful. Newcomer Christian Bables got the most cheers after being named Best Supporting Actor for his role as Barbs in Die Beautiful.HOOQ likewise gave out its own set of awards for the Short Films category including Best Screenplay: Mitatang; Best Director: Jarell Serencio Mga Bituin sa Siyudad; Special Jury Prize for Manila Scream; and Best Picture for EJK.

MMFF Short Film Best Director winner Jarelle Serencio of Mga Bituin sa Siudad


Ronnie Alonte and Rhian Ramos meanwhile, were recognized as the HOOQ Male and Female Celebrities of the Night for their stunning looks at the red carpet.

MMFF HOOQ Male Celebrity of the Night, Ronnie Alonte of Seklusyon


HOME OF THE MMFF WINNERS

HOOQ is the home of the largest collection of Pinoy movies and TV series spanning almost five decades, including close to a hundred winners and finalists of the Metro Manila Film Festival such as “Baler”, “Tanging Yaman”, “Muro Ami”, “Imortal”, the beloved franchises such as “Mano Po”, “Tanging Ina” “Shake, Rattle and Roll” and many more. New additions on HOOQ from the MMFF past entries include 2013’s “Pagpag: Siyam na Buhay”, “Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy” as well as the 2015 finalist “Haunted Mansion”.


According to Jeffrey Remigio, HOOQ Philippines Director of Content and Programming, they are adding more past MMFF winners to HOOQ’s carefully curated library of Filipino titles.

NEW PLATFORM FOR THE NEXT GEN FILMMAKERS
MMFF and HOOQ are also working together to encourage the next generation of movie makers through the HOOQ Short Films category. HOOQ awarded a host of Short Film prizes including the Special Jury Prize and the Best Short Film. 

Each HOOQ Short Film was partnered with a long-form finalist and were screened during the MMFF regular theater run from December 25 to January 3.  Each film runs under 5 minutes and most will be available on HOOQ shortly after conclusion of the Metro Manila Film Festival. 

“Last year, we saw a lot of very interesting entries that surprised us with their quick narratives and creative storytelling techniques,” added Remigio. “HOOQ believes in nurturing these next generation of film makers by providing them a platform where more audiences can view their movies.”

“The world has begun to take notice of the best content Philippine cinema can offer, by supporting these young filmmakers, HOOQ is also investing in the future of entertainment,” adds Remigio.

PARADE OF STARS

The festival kicked off with the annual Parade of Stars on December 23 which began at the Manila City Hall at Nicanor Lopez Street and ended at Plaza Miranda—the original route used in the very first MMFF Float Parade.

Among the stars that participated in the Grand Parade of Stars  were Nora Aunor, Eugene Domingo, Paolo Ballesteros, Kean Cipriano, Julia Barretto, Joshua Garcia, Ronnie Alonte, Dominic Roque, Mercedes Cabral and many others.

Bela Padilla also joined the parade aboard HOOQ’s OTJ float. Padilla is one of the lead stars of the upcoming series OTJ: The Missing 8, the very first original local content produced exclusively for the video on demand service.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

SM Mall of Asia's New Cinemas Open with Rouge One: A Star Wars Story

For those who missed watching Rouge One last week to give way for the Metro Manila Film Festival, worry not, because selected cinemas will resume its viewing schedules after the MMFF is over. Still, I find it hard to understand why a lot of people failed to watch this latest Star Wars film while it was still showing in practically all movie houses all over the country?! I mean, the movie occupied all cinemas at SM malls, and still many weren’t able to watch it?! 😕 Nonetheless, for those who procrastinated during its viewing dates, you will just have to wait for few more days. 

A selfie with my son Gab before heading inside the cinema...
For the sake of clarity, the movie Rouge One is neither a prequel nor sequel to the Star Wars series. It is a “sub-story” that was expounded inside Star Wars Episode IV – New Hope. In that particular episode, many viewers prompted the question on how the Resistance was able to retrieve the Death Star plans from the hands of the Empire. The Episode IV opening scroll was the only context viewers can get to answer that question. The full details of how the plans were acquired is actually the story of Rouge One. 

with Star Wars Cos-players...
Watching a Star Wars movie is always a treat for me, most especially if such is experienced in a good quality wide screen cinema. Recently, SM Cinemas at the Mall of Asia launched Cinemas 7 & 8 with state-of-the-art reclining seats and Dolby sense-surround system to capture a close to life cinematic experience. These movie houses were finally launched to members of the media the other week, and what film could be more fitting to experience an official opening than Rouge One?


 Directed by Gareth Edwards, the story was written by the creative minds of John Knoll and Gary Whitta. It is an off-shoot story that revolves around the lives of mortal characters of the resistance or rebels after the rise of the Empire and the fall of the great republic. For the first time, a powerful Jedi, who is always expected to save the day, will not be the center of the story's heroic feats. The film impressed to the viewers that behind every victory of the resistance to defeat the emperor are regular soldiers who are likely “less stronger” in the side of the Force but equally brave and committed nonetheless.  

So excited watching Rouge One on these reclining seats...
The film stars Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso, Diego Luna as Cassian Andor, Alan Tudyc as the android K-2SO, Donnie Yen (IP Man) as the blind Chirutt Imwe, Wen Jiang as Baze Malbus, Ben Mendelson as Orson Krennik, Guy Henry as Governor Tarkin, and Forest Whitaker as the cyborg Saw Gerrera. Some of the amazing features of the film is the state-of-the-art CGI rendering of Governor Tarkin, which originally starred the late Peter Cushing and the young Princess Leia starred by late Carrie Fisher. It was said to be one of the most expensive and the most true-to-life character reconstructions ever made by computer graphic imaging. 

Rouge One is handful of rebels committed to steal the plans of the Death Star. (Photo credit to: ClickHandler.com)
 In just over two weeks of its showing, the film has already crossed the $200 million mark in Box Office revenues and is not showing any signs of slowing down yet in ticket sales. Catch Rogue One at the newly opened Cinemas 7 and 8 in SM Mall of Asia to fully enjoy your movie watching experience!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Sun Life Taps USSC as New Partner in Offering Insurance Services

No Filipino should be left behind when it comes to life insurance. Sun Life of Canada (Philippines) is relentlessly seeking new ways so that life insurance can be accessible and affordable to every Filipino who painstakingly work and provide for their families wherever they are in the world. Earlier this year, the leading and the longest-standing insurance provider in the country launched the RISE PH campaign to push for greater financial inclusion expanding its market towards the marginalized segment of the society. 

Executives of Sun Life and USSC
Part of the campaign and another step further to expand its services is Sun Life's partnership with Universal Storefront Services Corporation (USSC), one of the country’s largest networks of one-stop service shops that offer money transfer, transport ticketing, payment collection, cellphone top-ups and non-life insurance offerings. USSC, for those who are not familiar with the company, was the Radio Communications of the Philippines Inc. or RCPI years ago. For the millennial, RCPI was the leading wired-telegram provider in the Philippines. 

Mr. Jose Xavier Gonzales, President and CEO of USSC and 
Ms. Riza Mantaring, President and CEO of Sun Life of Canada (Philippines)

Monday, December 26, 2016

HOOQ Presents the Celebrity Premier of “SEKLUSYON”

”Sapat na ba ang dasal mo?”

After the critically acclaimed “On The Job – OTJ” movie that gained a lot of praises and positive criticisms as well as it's subsequent partnership with HOOQ to produce a six-part series based on the film, Reality Entertainment once again partnered with the video-on-demand app in bringing another nerve-racking masterpiece by the Award Winning Director Erik Matti entitled - SEKLUSYON. The film is an official entry in the upcoming 42nd Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF). Likewise, It has garnered positive reviews from its international premier at the recent Macau International Film Festival.

HOOQ Team with the cast of Seklusyon and Direk Erik Matti
On its Philippine Premier held at the Cinema 10 of SM Mega Mall last December 22, 2016, Director Erik Matti and the rest of the cast took time to hold a press conference that was attended by various members of the media. In the conference, Direk Erik highlighted his idea of honing great talents in the newbies, which makes most of the film's cast members as rookies in the film industry who possess promising acting talents.

Director Erik Matti

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