Established industry mentors Ms. Cindy Burdette, CEO and Co-founder of ALLCARE, and Mr. Robi Del Rosario, Founder and Chief Urban Farmer of UPROOT Urban Farms, shared their knowledge, experience, and other learnings to assist business owners achieve higher levels of success.

Opportunities

Shell LiveWIRE is Shell’s global enterprise development program offered across 15 countries to specifically chosen startup businesses in order to further improve their systems, hone their capabilities, and give them opportunities to be part of the Shell Value Chain. Shell LiveWIRE Homeroom Sessions open doors to a wider range of audience and are offered beyond the Shell LiveWIRE program which focuses on the categories of Energy, Environment, Circular Economy, and Local Prosperity.

Shell LiveWIRE Virtual Homeroom Sessions help build capabilities of various startups for free, anchoring it on the principle that entrepreneurs are the lifeline of the economy, As Serge Bernal, PSPC's Vice President of Corporate Relations, explained the company's role and vision in nurturing the next generation of innovative entrepreneurs: “Shell LiveWIRE is here to be a partner, mentor, and strong support system for the young, growing, and driven business owners who are continuing to power the nation's economy and development. The Virtual Homeroom will equip them further to be a lean and mean team, teaching them effective methods to scale up their companies in the continuously evolving business landscape, allowing them to become leaders and innovators in their field.”

The mentors in the Virtual Homeroom lead companies that provide solutions to critical sectors of society. ALLCARE is a digital benefits platform that helps SMEs and freelancers plan ahead for their own financial security, while UPROOT Urban Farms is a provider of affordable produce to local communities.

Steps to startup success

The LiveWIRE Virtual Homeroom’s module on the Lean Startup Methodology enables companies to shorten development cycles while testing their viability. Its core principle holds that companies that invest their time into building products or services in this smart, systematic way can reduce market risks, expensive product launches, and financial failures.

Ms. Burdette described to the audience the advantages that the Shell LiveWIRE Virtual Homeroom brings to the attendees: “Every day [in business] is a challenge and struggle. No entrepreneur goes into a journey fully prepared and knows which challenges to solve. My goal is to share what I have done so you don't have to go through the same thing.”

Mr. Del Rosario explained the importance of the Lean Startup methodology particularly to rising startups: “It helps get your product to market and then lets you see how it is doing and how viable it is.” This early assessment of the startup offering is essential to the development of the business, “as the crucial thing facing them is limited funds.”

Solving the problems that occur in an emerging economy like the Philippines is challenging for startups and MSME’s. However, these companies can gain significant advantage in growth with the right capital, experience, and connections in their respective industries. Mentorship and guidance from a peer network or experts in the industry are also helpful, because one reason startups fail is the lack of expertise of the emerging leaders and workforce alike.

Commitment to nation-building

Shell LiveWIRE fills this gap by supporting businesses with the resources they need to scale and become resilient and sustainable. “Shell remains committed to helping Filipino startups and enterprises adapt, innovate, and thrive. I encourage you to keep learning, building your ambitions, and motivating others,” Bernal said to the participants. “Through the partnerships forged, we can do our share in building a better future for the country. Together, we can keep moving the Philippines forward.”

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