PBC DNE – Illustrado 300 Most Influential Filipinos in the Gulf

Trailblazers – Philippine Business Council – Dubai & Northern Emirates

Non-Profit Group 

Vanguards of Philippine business in the UAE, the Philippine Business Council – Dubai and Northern Emirates has been spearheading initiatives to advance opportunities for existing and aspiring Filipino entrepreneurs, as well as their partners in the market. Established since 2001, the non-profit organization which is recognized by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce has been benefitting the Filipino business community through various projects through the years,

Photo by: Ace Reyes

With the slogan “Connecting people, bridging businesses,” the group mounts multifaceted activities that provide business owners, aspiring entrepreneurs, as well as professionals, educational, as well as networking activities, beyond the Filipino community.  The PBC DNE also represents the Philippines within the larger community of multicultural businesses and councils in the emirates.

PBC DNE’s most notable projects which run the whole year round include Sobiz (Socializing for Business), Edubiz (Education for Business), as well as Interface (a landmark gathering of entrepreneurs from different communities hosted by the PBC).  In 2019, PBC DNE also launched the PBC Fellowship, a training program for entrepreneurs looking to start up their businesses.  In 2020, the group is also looking to mount the largest Philippine art festival in Dubai.

“We are proud of our team of talented volunteers and our initiatives on continuous education, business networking, and social events which elevate Filipinos in Dubai and the Northern Emirates, PBC DNE Director Leo Barrameda says.  He adds, “We must continuously learn, and put aside time or money into improving ourselves first then others. This will elevate us one Filipino at a time.”

Executive Committee:  Chairman – Bobbie Carella, Vice Chairman – Lalaine Chu-Benitez, Director of Finance – Anne Orlina, Secretary – Lairene Reodica Sint, Business Dev Director – Enrique Yamzon, CSR Director – Leo Barrameda, Membership Director – Allan Bautista, PR & Comms Director – Ken Peralta, Projects & Events Director – Andy Minodin, Social Media Directors – Eden Nebreja and Renz Salada, Sponsorship Director – Marlowe Paran


Illustrado 300 Most Influential Filipinos in the Gulf is Supported by: Kaya Skin Clinic,  Emirates Airline, and Unilever.

Special Thanks to Michael CincoEzra Couture , GiordanoDarcey FlowersIKON SolutionsVictors FreightMPQ Tourism, Asia Gulf Companies –La Carne & Filfood, WOL Water

Get a copy of Illustrado 300 Most Influential Filipinos in the Gulf Legacy Edition

Illustrado 300 Most Influential Filipinos Legacy Edition 2020

PBC Dubai & Northern Emirates


At the forefront of Filipino entrepreneurship in Dubai and the Northern Emirates, the Philippine Business Council – DNE, a member of the ASEAN Business Councils Alliance – plays an intrinsic role in elevating the Filipino community.  As a unique non-profit organization recognized by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the PBC DNE does not only represent the Philippines within the multicultural business fraternity of the country, the organization is also instrumental in connecting Filipino businesses for mutual opportunities, as well as providing learning opportunities to current, as well as, aspiring business people.

Always pushing to bolster Filipino visibility, a spirit of cooperation and an appetite for learning, the group’s year has been peppered with many achievements.  2018 saw the continuation of the group’s series ‘Sobiz’ short for ‘socials and business’ – an innovative and fun networking platform, as well as ‘Edubiz’ (Education for Business) which facilitates workshops on topics relevant to entrepreneurs.  The PBC’s cornerstone event created to connect foreign and Philippine businesses towards mutual development and growth gathered for its 3rd-year captains of industries, entrepreneurs from the Filipino community as well as other key expatriate groups and UAE, ASEAN and Philippine dignitaries.  This year’s theme “Ascend Through Innovation” featured talks and discussions on how businesses can move forward empowered by technology.  Heralding a new level of expansion, the PBC DNE also facilitated the establishment of its first business sub-committee under its purview. The League of Freight Forwarders (LFF) gathered 37 of the top Filipino operators in the sector.  2019 is set to be an even bigger year with the launch of the PBC Fellowship an 8-month development and empowerment programme to help Filipinos transition from employees to entrepreneurs.

Speaking on the PBC’s growth and dedication to the Filipino community, Chairman Marian Celeste Carella affirms, “We remain fully committed, and at the same time continue to be energized by our mission and vision.  To be able to serve our compatriots and light the fire of competitiveness, leadership and the spirit of enterprise within them is quite a privilege.  Hence, we forge on.”



Special thanks to our sponsors: Emirates Airline, Stars n Bars La Mer, Liali, Instax – Grandstores UAE, Dusit Thani Dubai, Gver – Your Friendly Marketplace for Sharing, Meeting Dancewear , MPQ, CMG, Filbrit, and our partners Rozen Antonio Photography,  Alex Callueng Photography, Jef Anog Photography, and Ethereal Photography.


Browse the digital issue of Illustrado 100 Most Influential Filipinos of the Gulf 2018



100 Most Influential Filipinos in the Gulf: Philippine Business Council – Business Vanguards


As forerunners of entrepreneurship for the Filipino community in the emirates, the Philippine Business Councils of Abu Dhabi and Dubai exist to support both individuals and organizations succeed in their field of business, be it here in the UAE or the Philippines.


PBC Abu Dhabi


100 MIFG: Philippine Business Council - Business Vanguards
Photo by: Alex Callueng


“As Filipino entrepreneurs and professionals, we would like to see our own people succeed, uplift the Filipino brand, and to prove that Filipinos are also competitive in the realm of business,” says Howell Perez, chairman of PBC Abu Dhabi. Besides having managed numerous business development workshops intending to help Filipino-owned companies exploit significant opportunities, they too focus on the growth of bilateral trade, investment and tourism, and establishing, plus maintaining networks with organizations in the UAE.

The executive team consisting of Chairman Howell Perez, Vice-Chairman Dr. Joey Villanueva, Corporate Secretary Mylene Escano De Guzman, Treasurer Christian Jay Redual, Director of Marketing and Communications Gau Raganit, Director of Trade, Industry and Entrepreneurship Jovy Tuaño, Directors of Events Ms. Teresa Keating & Dennis Castro, Director of Sponsorship Dr. Aileen Villanueva, Director of PR Jan Barlow, and Legal Advisor Atty. Barney Almazar, have organized numerous successful projects of which include the Spirit of Enterprise and Knowledge Workshops, as well as a medical mission for the Philippine Overseas Labor Office, and various networking events.

Stressing the importance of uniting Filipino entrepreneurs, Howell shares: “Working together as a single unified community can achieve great things. From ideas up to combining resources despite the challenging market – together we are stronger. We know the market because we are the market!” Through these initiatives, the group hopes that all Filipino businesses here in the UAE will continue to grow, innovate, and become the growth drivers, not only of our host country, but the whole GCC market.


PBC Dubai & Northern Emirates


100 MIFG: Philippine Business Council - Business Vanguards
Photo by: Alex Callueng


The Philippine Business Council Dubai and the Northern Emirates (PBC DNE), amongst countless duties, provides avenues for business exchange among Filipino entrepreneurs, and other parties with a commercial interest in the Filipino market in the emirates. At its core however, the group endeavors to help Filipinos to simply realize their full potential. Chairman Bobbie Carella voices: “We volunteer because we want to help our people excel. Even through touching a single person, their success can be a shining example that others can emulate and follow.”


This time around, aside from continuing to bolster ties with its South East Asian partners, the PBC also leads as Chairman of the ABCA (ASEAN Business Councils Alliance) and hosted last year’s ASEAN Golden Jubilee event.  The organization also provided networking opportunities to Filipino business owners and professionals via its SoBiz (Social Business) initiatives, not to mention informative workshops with EduBiz (Education Business).  2017 also saw the second edition of the prestigious PBC Dubai Interface, supported by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which gathered the emirates’ top industry executives and captains of business, graced by. The group is now preparing for the highly anticipated Philippine Food Festival. The role of PBC is more pertinent than ever, according to Chairman Bobbie Carella, especially with run up to Dubai Expo 2020. She shares: “By granting fellow Pinoys with aid and information, we hope to see a rise in Filipino owned and managed businesses, especially with Expo 2020 being two years away.”

PBC DNE is headed by Chairman Bobbie Carella, Vice Chairman Lalaine Chu-Benitez, and Directors Andy Minodin, Enrique Yamazon, Marlene Murphy, Ken Peralta, and Victor Manuel, the council also extends assistance to Philippine start-ups setting up in the country.



Photography by: Alex Callueng

Illustrado 100 was made possible by sponsors: GiordanoLiali JewelleryMitsubishi UAE- Al Habtoor MotorsMichael Cinco CoutureMapúa Institute of TechnologyCentro – Amwaj Rotana Hotel , Max’s Restaurant Middle East and GVER – Your Friendly MarketPlace for Sharing

Co-Sponsors: Herschel Supply Co.Rove HotelsThe Medical City – Dubai , Filipino Institute UAEMPQ TourismJAMES Travel and Tours DubaiOff the Hook Seafood RestaurantThe Original Barrio Fiesta Restaurant – Dubai and Tapa King UAE.


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