Filipinos in Dubai: PBC DUBAI’s LANDMARK INTERFACE 2015

The Philippine Business Council (PBC) of Dubai, under the patronage of the Embassy of the Philippines and the Philippine Consulate General of Dubai and the Northern Emirates, held a landmark event on the 11th of June 2015 at the Raffles Hotel Dubai, on the occasion of the 117th anniversary of Philippine Independence.  The inaugural PBC Dubai Interface 2015 event brought together captains of industries, entrepreneurs and top executives, as well as UAE and Philippine government dignitaries.

Created as a platform for connecting foreign and Philippine businesses towards mutual development and growth, the event hosted some 200 top executives from the Filipino community, as well as other key expatriate groups, who have converged to discuss and explore opportunities for engaging and leveraging on the Filipino market in the Gulf.

The event which was graced by H.E. Ambassador Grace Relucio Princesa – Philippine Ambassador to the UAE, Hon. Consul Giovanni Palec of the Philippine Consulate General, and Mr. Rashid Hussain Al Meeza, Senior Executive-Member Relations of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry also featured esteemed speakers who shared best business and leadership practices to inspire guests.  Nisha Jagtiani, the youngest director of the Landmark Group instrumental in developing successful local fashion brands Splash and Iconic, among others, shared her experiences and insights in growing local brands, while multi-awarded Ishwar Chugani, CEO and Managing Director of Giordano Middle East and Executive Director and Board Member at Giordano HQ in Hong Kong, emphasized on the increasing need for companies to give back to society as a matter of good governance.  Guests were also provided valuable information on the benefits of operating via free zones, as facilitated by RAK Free Trade Zone’s Business Development Director – Tomas Csobonyei.

Filipinos in Dubai: PBC DUBAI’s LANDMARK INTERFACE 2015

The event, the first of its kind for the local Philippine business community in the Emirates, signals the PBC Dubai’s renewed thrust in playing an integral role in bolstering the presence of Filipino businesses and assisting entrepreneurs in the UAE. According to PBC Dubai Chairman Bobbie Carella, “Since its creation in 2001, the PBC Dubai has always supported the Filipino business community through its educational, charitable as well as social endeavors. We continue that tradition and this time, we renew our commitment and go about our mission with renewed vigor to assist Filipino entrepreneurs in developing relationships in the market, while developing business opportunities in the process.”

The PBC Dubai Interface 2015 was held with the support of sponsors – RAK Free Trade Zone, Ayala Land International, Landmark Group (Max Fashion and Emax), as well as Western Union and Illustrado Magazine, and was organized by the PBC Executive Committee consisting of – Bobbie Carella (Chairman), Red Vargas (Vice Chairman), Eden Borja (Treasurer), Caloy Serrano and Marty Plumley (Membership), Lalaine Chu-Benitez (Marketing), Andy Minodin (Projects), Christine Gonzales and Leo Barrameda (Secretariat).   The program was hosted by Mike Ortega and Lalaine Chu-Benitez, with entertainment provided by Danilo, a tenor who was flown in from Qatar with the accompaniment of keyboard artist Angelo. There was also an art exhibit by the UST Alumni.

PBC Dubai Interface 2015 at the Raffles Hotel – Dubai
PBC Dubai Executive Comittee with Hon. Consul Giovanni Palec (2nd from left). L-R: Bobbie Carella, Christine Gonzales, Marty Pulmley, Lalaine Chi-Benitez, Eden Borja, Red Vargas and Leo Barrameda


Entrepreneurs Virgil and Guil Afrika
Gemmy Lontoc of UAE Exchange and Ramon Benitez of Illustrado/CREO
Gisela and Red Vargas (center) with guests
Special Guest Speaker Nisha Jagtiani – Director of Landmark Group (3rd from left) with Bobbie Carella and guests
Hon. Consul Giovanni Palec with Rashid Hussain Al Meeza of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Cleo Eleazar (2nd from left) – Senior Manager, PR & Events – RAK FTZ, with guests
L-R: Caloy Serrano (Al Rostamani), Arlene Pulido, Engr. Mary Jane Alvero Al Mahdi (CEO, Geosciences Labs), Labor Attache Hon. Delmer Cruz, Art Los Banos, Steve Todd (Gulf Law) and former PBC Abu Dhabi Chairman Jovy Tuano.
L-R: Bobbie Carella with entrepreneurs Iman and Luchie Suguitan (Ahsant)
Marty Plumley (2nd to left) with representatives of Landmark Group
PBC Dubai Executive Committee (L-R): Christine Gonzales (Secretary), Bobbie Carella (Chairman), Andy Minodin (Projects), Eden Borja (Treasurer), Marty Plumley (Membership), Red Vargas (Vice Chairman), Leo Barrameda (Secretary), Lalaine Chu-Benitez (Marketing), Caloy Serrano (Membership).
PBC Dubai Chairman Bobbie Carella
H.E. Ambassador Grace Relucio-Princesa
Hon. Consul Giovanni Palec
Special Guest Speaker – Ishwar Chugani, CEO and Managing Director of Giordano Middle East
Tomas Csobonyei, Business Development Director, RAK FTZ
Tomas Csobonyei, Business Development Director, RAK FTZ

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