Becoming a millionaire doesn’t happen overnight. It takes vision, dedication, and a little bit of luck. Mrs. Corazon D. Ong is one the Filipino business giants whose rags to riches story can teach you that if you love doing something, you should try to make money out of it. It may be a hobby or a passion of yours but it could also be the next big thing.
Corazon D. Ong Dares to Dream and Achieves It
In the early 1970s, Corazon Ong found herself employed as a dietitian in a hospital, preparing diets for patients. This she did with passion and utmost care, knowing the importance of proper diet to the well being of patients and non-patients alike. She only gave up this job to offer herself to motherhood, after marrying her husband Jose, a professor at the Ateneo de Manila University.
As a full-time mother, Mrs. Ong had to take care of the household, which now included two kids. Her experience as a dietitian proved useful in preparing native snacks for the kids and baon for husband Jose. At one point, she decided to experiment with a new filling for siopao, in addition to the usual bola bola and asado.
She developed a skinless longaniza as palaman for homemade siopao. Little did she know that her skinless longaniza would be such a hit, that everyone who tasted it would ask for more. News of her little concoction spread across the neighborhood, and this was when she decided to convert their dining table into a working area, because of piling orders from her neighbors and friends. It was inevitable that Mrs. Ong’s hobby turned into a business.
“We had to convert the back of our Valenzuela residence into a small processing area then,” she said. The demand for her products was so strong that she decided to establish on June 26, 1975 a small meat processing company which she registered as CDO Food Products, carrying her initials. With a seed capital of P60,000 borrowed from a local bank, CDO Food Products began operation with longaniza and tocino as start-up products. The rest, as they say, is history.
CDO Foodsphere has built its success on five cornerstones, the first of which is strong management team with open eyes and ears to every opportunity that is customer oriented. It also has a passion for unending product innovation through research and product development. The company thrives on very cost-competitive pricing that makes its products affordable to mass market.
Moreover, the company has built marketing and distribution channels to bring its products to all Filipino households. Finally, CDO Foodsphere knows how to communicate its message well, such as the quality and benefits of its products, to the public at large by tapping efficient communication tools.
Truly, CDO Foodsphere puts emphasis on continuous product innovation and diversification to achieve Mrs. Ong’s core vision – that is to provide affordable food products to the most number of Filipino households.
Today, the company has more than 300 product lines in about 14 categories. The company hopes to offer the people with more variants and product lines of marine-based food items. As a proof of its commitment to ensure food safety and food security in the Philippines, CDO Foodsphere has invested in a modern food processing complex in Malvar, Batangas.
Under her leadership, CDO-Foodsphere Inc. has become a modern and leading food company known for its product innovation that provides the best quality and affordable food products, earning the trust of the Filipino people. Mrs. Ong is indeed a great inspiration to all Filipino women and to all Filipino entrepreneurs.
Corazon Dayro Ong lives up to her dream – to serve the Filipino consumers with affordable and quality food products that can be enjoyed within the comforts of their homes. She promises to continue to pursue this dream, the CDO way.
The Secret behind the CDO’s success.
Ong says: “Love your work. Enjoy what you are doing. Focus on your project and be involved – be hands on. Have perseverance and dedication.”
Know your product better than anyone else. Know also your customer, and have a burning desire to succeed. Learn to be creative and innovative – always looking for ways to improve your products and to make them stand out from the competition. Be receptive to learning. Be open to new ideas and new approaches to your business. Never think you already know everything – that’s a pitfall. No one said starting up and growing a business would be easy, but it’s worth it.”
Author: Angelique Vergel