Saturday, August 13, 2016

Young Davaoenos Get a Chance to Join World-Class Football Camps in Malaysia and Europe

Wazzup Pilipinas!

About 300 children aged 10-12 from Davao City and nearby provinces will vie for a chance to join world-class football camps in Malaysia and possibly, Europe this year for free as part of the tie-up between Astro Malaysia and Globe Telecom.

The top eight players from the Davao leg will be competing against talented athletes from Iloilo, Negros Occidental, and Manila for 12 slots in the Astro Kem Bola Advanced Training Programme in Kuala Lumpur next month together with their counterparts from Singapore and Malaysia. The best players from the advanced camp will then fly to Europe for two weeks of professional football training in December 2016.

“The Astro Kem Bola programme aims to provide a comprehensive learning and football development experience. Through it, we have seen talented kids grow into well-rounded athletes playing in the Malaysian national youth team on an international platform. We are privileged to be able to play a role in their development and look forward to do the same for the youth of Philippines and other ASEAN countries,” said Datuk David Michael Yap, Vice President of Community Affairs, Astro. The Malaysian media and entertainment powerhouse network, likewise, introduced recently to Globe customers the latest in live sports such as e-games and the newest Asian shows via over-the-top (OTT) provider Tribe.

“We are proud that Astro has chosen TM Football Para sa Bayan as a venue to discover talented kids who would be given an opportunity to further harness their craft and bring them closer to their dreams. Through our sports advocacy, we hope to forge similar partnerships with other like-minded organizations to help uplift the lives of the youth especially those from the marginalized sector and provide them with a platform to showcase their talents,” said Fernando Esguerra, Globe Director for Citizenship.

Ray Guinoo, TM Portfolio and Brand Head added: “TM, being a brand for the youth, is always after the development of our young people. One of the ways to do this is through TM Football Para sa Bayan. We are using the power of sports to instil in the youth the importance of possessing the right attitude, good values, and a good education. Hopefully, through the sports communities and the tie up with Astro, we can create more opportunities for the kids across the country.

”The TM Football Para sa Bayan clinics are being handled by Green Archers United (GAU), a professional football league which has been Globe Telecom’s implementing partner in developing the football grassroots program in the last three years.

To show that Astro and Globe/TM are looking for more than just exceptional football skills, the kids will also be selected based on teamwork; discipline, behaviour and sportsmanship; communication on and off the pitch; positive attitude towards teammates, volunteers, and coaches; ability to listen to instructions; and good personality.

The football clinics are open to all street football communities, underprivileged kids, varsity players from public and private schools, and private football clubs. Interested participants may register by sending their complete name, birth date, contact number or calling Deeg Rodriguez at +639178843334.

Live, Work, Play: Updates on Some of Metro Manila’s Mixed-Use Projects

Wazzup Pilipinas!

To say that Metro Manila’s real estate landscape is fast evolving is quite an understatement. For instance, no one would have guessed that Ayala Triangle was the site of the Philippines’ main and only airport—Nielsen Field—in the 1930s, before its destruction during World War II and subsequent redevelopment in the 1950s.

To give examples of more recent real estate “rebirths,” many residents of Metro Manila still remember Bonifacio Global City and McKinley Hill before they were, well, Bonifacio Global City and McKinley Hill. The 244-hectare Filinvest Alabang, in addition, was once a vast pastureland before the late 1980s, and Rockwell Center once  housed a thermal power plant operated by MERALCO.

Because the real estate industry’s appetite for new land to develop is insatiable, a growing number of master-planned, mixed-use projects are currently being constructed in many parts of Metro Manila. One can describe this building boom to be quite intense as every project that completes means more shopping malls, office towers, residential condos, and lots and lots of leisure areas add to the capital’s ever evolving real estate landscape.

Mixed-use projects will soon shape Metro Manila’s real estate landscape.

Whether you call them townships, mixed-use estates, or live-work-play developments, these real estate projects have everything people need: master-planned, centrally located, transit-oriented, and are teeming with activities 24/7.

Lamudi Philippines and take a look at some of these future self-contained “mini-cities” to see their progress.

South Park District
Developer: Avida Land
Location: Alabang, Muntinlupa
Size: 6.6 hectares

A project by Ayala Land subsidiary Avida Land, South Park District will soon rise on the former site of Nestlé factory along National Road in Alabang, Muntinlupa. According to Avida Land, two high-rise residential condominiums are currently underway in South Park District: Avida Towers Altura Towers 1 and 2, with the first tower scheduled for turnover sometime during the fourth quarter of 2016, and the second during the second quarter of 2018.

Aside from these residential components, Ayala Malls will open South Park Mall during the fourth quarter of 2016, which will boast 49,000 sqm of retail space, while the South Park District Corporate Center, a 12,000-sqm office tower to be built atop the mall, will be completed during the fourth quarter of 2017.

At present, South Park District’s Central Park is now open to public, which features interesting sculptures by artist Greg Yuson, and BAGA Manila, a barbeque held from Thursdays to Sundays. According to Avida Land, prices of condo units in Avida Towers Altura Tower 1 have already increased approximately 6.03 percent since launch, indicating positive interest among property buyers.

Vista City
Developer: Vista Land
Location: Between the cities of Muntinlupa and Las Piñas and the provinces of Cavite and Laguna
Size: Approximately 1,500 hectares

Touted as Vista Land’s most expansive project to date, Vista City, situated on an area shared by the cities of Las Piñas and Muntinlupa and the provinces of Laguna and Cavite in southern Metro Manila, promises to be a complete community comprising vertical and horizontal housing, BPO offices, shopping malls, and even educational institutions.

According to Vista Land, the project’s retail component—Evia Lifestyle Center—is complete, which boasts an air-conditioned courtyard with a sky ceiling, high-end cinemas, and an indoor glass atrium.

Vista City’s residential components are also quite comprehensive, representing the company’s three brands targeting different market segments: Brittany’s Portofino Heights, Portofino South, and Amore by Portofino for upscale property buyers; Crown Asia’s Ponticelli Gardens and Ponticelli Hills for mid-end to high-end homebuyers; and Camella’s Cerritos for starting families.

Furthermore, Vista Land is developing Vista Hub situated along Daang Hari South, which is being earmarked as the south’s foremost business and IT park. Construction of its initial 10-hectare is well underway and will eventually house BPO companies. Another feature of Vista City is Palazzo Verde, one of Metro manila’s most sought after wedding venues.

The mixed-use projects future components include more office spaces, health and medical institutions, schools, sports facilities, and a hotel, while Vista Land’s residential components have already launched new phases of its residential projects.

McKinley West
Developer: Megaworld Corporation
Location: Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
Size: 34.5 hectares

Located just beside Forbes Park and the Manila Polo Club, McKinley West, in keeping with other Megaworld projects, is inspired aesthetic wise by modern and traditional European architecture.

This project, which sits on the former JUSMAG property in Fort Bonifacio, is expected to be fully developed over the next 10 years (Megaworld announced that it has earmarked Php45 billion for the project’s development), which when completed will composed of residential (condos and house and lots), IT parks and BPO offices, retail centers, and schools, among others.

The project’s first condo component—St. Moritz—was launched in 2015 and patterned after London’s One Hyde Park apartments. According to Megaworld, from Php190,000 per square meter, prices of St. Moritz units have already soared to Php215,000 per square meter in just a little over a year since its launch. The company also revealed that residential lots at McKinley West Village are now commanding prices of Php200,000 per square meter in the secondary market. Lots in this upscale project have selling prices of just Php70,000 per square meter when it was launched in 2010.

Arca South
Developer: Ayala Land
Location: Upper Bicutan, Taguig
Size: 74 hectares

At 74 hectares, Arca South is perhaps Ayala Land’s largest project inside Metro Manila since Bonifacio Global City. Soon to rise on the former FTI Complex in Taguig’s Upper Bicutan area, the estate will sit next to where East Service and C5 roads meet and will also feature a transport terminal dubbed “South Integrated Transport System.” According to Ayala Land, this section of Arca South, which is a multi-modal terminal, will facilitate organized transfers of some 4,000 buses and approximately 160,000 passengers expected to pass through the terminal daily.

Arca South’s residential components are doing quite well. In fact, according to information obtained from Ayala Land, the estate’s residential sales have already reached 70 percent, with three of the company’s real estate brands—Ayala Land Premier, Alveo Land, and Avida Land—together have sold over 1,000 units just a year after the projects’ individual launches. These Ayala subsidiaries’ residential projects in Arca South are Arbor Lanes, Veranda, and Avida Tower One Union Place, respectively.

In addition to these projects, excavation and construction have also begun for Ayala Malls, the Arca South Corporate Center, and Seda Hotel Arca South. The projects’ commercial lots are also fully sold, and according to Ayala Land, commercial land appreciated by 39 percent in less than a year since the project was launched in 2013. In addition, the company announced that it will invest Php80 billion for Arca South’s first five years, after which the estate will boast a built area of approximately 870,000 square meters.

Circuit Makati
Developer: Ayala Land
Location: Brgy. Carmona, Makati City
Size: 21 hectares

Dubbed as Makati’s newest entertainment district, Ayala Land’s 21-hectare Circuit Makati sits on the former Santa Ana Racetrack in Barangay Carmona along the southern banks of Pasig River. This mixed-use project will be anchored by the real estate giant’s various brands: Alveo Land for residential, Ayala Malls and Offices, and Ayala Hotels.

Although still under construction, several sections of Circuit Makati are now open to the public, including Circuit Lane and the 400-sqm black box theater Power Mac Center Spotlight; Globe Circuits Event Ground, a two-hectare entertainment venue that can accommodate up to 10,000 spectators; and sports facilities Mountain Dew Skate Park, Gatorade Chelsea FC Blue Pitch, and Urban CityKart Racing.

Ayala’s high-end residential subsidiary Alveo Land has already launched two high-rise condo projects in Circuit Makati: Solstice Towers 1 and 2, which are scheduled for turnover in August 2018 and January 2020, respectively. Aside from Solstice 1 and 2, structures under construction in Circuit Makati include the Stiles Enterprise Plaza, Ayala Malls Circuit, and Seda Hotel Circuit. According to Ayala Land, when completed Circuit Makati will boast approximately 9,000 condo units, 130,000 sqm of office space, and 250 hotel rooms.

Alabang West
Developer: Megaworld Corporation
Location: Brgy. Almanza Dos, Las Piñas
Size: 62 hectares

Currently being developed by Megaworld subsidiary Global Estates Resorts, Inc., Alabang West is a 62-hectare residential and commercial township (the real estate giant’s largest in Metro Manila) that is strategically located close to Alabang’s leisure and commercial districts (although the project itself is within the jurisdiction of Las Piñas City).

Alabang West’s highlight will be its Beverly Hills-themed lifestyle concept, complete with a 1.3-kilometer commercial row inspired by Rodeo Drive. According to Megaworld, almost half of the 788 lots made available during the project’s launch in 2014 were sold between October and December of that year. The company added that land prices in Alabang West rose by 25 to 30 percent in early 2015 from the township’s launch in 2014. Further, Alabang West is just one of several real estate projects in southern Metro Manila that will benefit from infrastructure developments in the area—namely, the Muntinlupa–Cavite Expressway (MCX) and the Cavite–Laguna Expressway (CALAX).

Vertis North
Developer: Ayala Land
Location: North Triangle, Brgy. Bagong Pag-Asa, Quezon City
Size: 29 hectares

Dubbed as Quezon City’s very first central business district, Vertis North is a 29-hectare prime property located between EDSA, North Avenue, and Mindanao Avenue, just across from Ayala’s TriNoma Mall. Makati Development Corporation is currently undertaking the land development of the estate, as well as construction of Avida Towers Vita, a three-tower high condo scheduled to be turned over in March 2017 (Tower 1), September 2017 (Tower 2), and February 2018 (Tower 3); High Park, a high-end two-tower condo by Alveo Land, which will be turned over in the third quarter of 2019 (Tower 1) and 2020 (Tower 2). Aside from these two residential components, Ayala Hotels is also building Seda Hotel Vertis.

Vertis North is expected to boost the city’s economic development. Ayala Land has announced that it is investing Php65 billion for the project, which when completed will have approximately 45 towers and buildings composed of offices, shopping malls, hotel, and residential condominiums. The project’s first retail component will open in late 2016.

Senator Expresses Alarm Over HIV-AIDS Incidence Among Youth

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros challenged young people today to help overturn the HIV-AIDS epidemic. In an International Youth Day forum by Unilab Foundation’s Ideas Positive, the Senator expressed alarm over the rising incidence of HIV-AIDS, especially among young people.

“Young people are currently at the losing end of the HIV-AIDS epidemic. In the Philippines, newly diagnosed HIV cases increased by 230% from 2011 to 2015, mostly among young people, according to the DOH. In Metro Manila, there have been 303 new cases just last May this year”, Hontiveros told 150 young people from all over the country gathered in the forum.

“What is also troubling is that 3 out of 5 young Filipinos think that they are immune to HIV. To set the record straight, wala pa pong available immunization laban sa HIV”, she added in her speech.

As her legislative agenda, the Akbayan Senator filed Senate Bill #376 or the Philippine HIV and AIDS Bill, which seeks introduce a legal framework on HIV that incorporates lessons from the current HIV response and introduces newer evidence-based, human rights-informed, and gender transformative strategies to prevent and treat the epidemic.

Hontiveros, the new Chairperson of the Committee on Health and Demography in the Senate, also expressed interest in partnering with youth health advocates to combat HIV-AIDS. “The role of young people and your ideas is to inspire the government. We have a lot to learn from you, believe me”, she expressed.

She committed that her office is open to new ideas. “In a world full of PokemonGO, let me be your Pokemon-stay. In the words of millennials today, ‘G tayo, mga bes’”, she humored.

WWF and HSBC’s Rain Campaign Prepares Households for Monsoon Season

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The rainy season is finally here!

This time of year, the Rain Campaign of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) is at its most significant.

The Rain Campaign raises awareness on the importance of freshwater supplies while making people more conscious of their water footprint. The campaign promotes the use of rainwater collectors as an alternative source of water for households.

This campaign that started in 2012 has now reached seven schools in Pasig and Donsol, educated more than 1400 students – and helped more than 100 families.

HSBC volunteer employees have helped WWF in teaching students to be more discriminating in using water. Volunteers took part in the collection of water samples to test water quality, like the level of alkalinity and the presence of bacteria in both tap water and collected rainwater. HSBC volunteers also mentored students about simple household solutions to have safe drinking water, while joining students in painting drums that can serve as rainwater collectors. 

Hollywood Actor Nicholas Hoult, aka X-Men’s Beast, Headlines AsiaPOP Comicon Manila 2016

Wazzup Pilipinas!

“What a Lovely Day” and a “Beastly” good time it is for movie and pop fans around the region as AsiaPOP Comicon Manila 2016 (APCC Manila) confirmed Hollywood actor Nicholas Hoult as the latest celebrity headliner to hit the stage of the biggest pop culture convention slated on August 26 to 28 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City.

Hoult, who made his acting debut with the 1996 Canadian-British film Intimate Relations, is best known for playing mutant scientist Beast in X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Days of Future Past, War Boy Nux in Mad Max: Fury Road, protagonist Jack in Jack the Giant Slayer, and R in Warm Bodies.

In the past, Hoult starred in the independent, science fiction drama Young Ones opposite Michael Shannon and Elle Fanning and directed by Jake Paltrow, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. He also starred opposite Colin Firth in Tom Ford's directorial debut A Single Man to rave reviews.

Hoult's most recent movie appearances were in Drake Doremus' film Equals, a futuristic drama also starring Kristen Stewart, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival, as well as the British independent production Kill Your Friends, based on a novel by John Niven.

He has recently finished shooting writer/director Danny Strong's directorial debut Rebel in the Rye, in which he plays a young J.D. Salinger; and he will also be seen in the film Sand Castle for director Fernando Coimbra, in which he portrays an American soldier on a mission to help a village at the end of the war in Iraq.

Taal Volcano Protected Landscape's Ecotourism Receives Big Boost

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Taal’s ecotourism has received a big boost from the collaboration between Globe Telecom and the non-profit environmental organization Pusod, Inc. which are both working together to empower communities around the lake through environment education and sustainable enterprises.

One of the key programs implemented by Globe and Pusod to address the area’s environmental issues is the promotion of ecotourism through the Taal Lake Conservation Center (TLCC) which gives a low-impact alternative to commercial tourism and promotes conservation of the ecosystem.

As a result of the partnership, earnings of TLCC jumped by 1400 % . From revenues of only P40,000 during its first year, TLCC registered an annual revenue of P600,000 by end 2015.

The facility was established by Pusod, in partnership with the Local Government of Mataasnakahoy and TVPL Protected Area Management Board, in 2011. TLCC serves as a knowledge hub for researches conducted in TVPL and operates the ecotourism program in partnership with Globe Citizenship. The program offers Community Walking Tours, Heritage Tours, Knowledge Tours to the Calawit side of the Volcano Island and other low impact water sports – Kayaking, Oz Goose Sailing, Stand Up Paddling.

“We continue to find ways of cooperation to protect the environment and support sustainable livelihood and conservation, thereby, giving birth to our partnership with Pusod which shares the same environmental values as Globe. Through our joint efforts, we are able to create positive impact across the value chain -- from the community-based tour guides, boat operators, horse guides, local caterer, and community volunteers,” said Fernando Esguerra, Director of Globe Citizenship.

Getting the Best of Your Pokémon GO Journey

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Gear up trainers! Pokémon GO is finally available in the Philippines, and it’s time to fulfill your dreams of becoming a Pokémon master! Developed by Niantic Inc., Pokémon GO blends the much beloved world of the classic Pokémon game, with the real physical world through augmented reality. As a player of the game you must start your journey as a Pokémon Trainer to catch Pokémon, train them and eventually become a Pokémon Master. However, unlike other mobile games, Pokémon GO requires you to put more physical effort and even strategy to progress and master the game.

As the game is now officially available in the Philippines after weeks of anticipation, players are more than ready to go out and explore around. But don’t just roam around, be the very best with these tips when starting your Pokémon GO quest.

Always bring extra power – Playing Pokémon GO uses internet either through mobile data or WiFi, GPS to locate you and Pokémon nearby, and even your camera as part of the augmented reality experience, resulting to heavy battery drain when playing the game. It is best to always bring an extra power bank with you to keep your game going.

Hydrate properly – Pokémon GO requires you to go around and explore your surroundings, sometimes even walk or bike 10 kilometers just to hatch a Pokémon egg. With this, trainers are advised to always bring water and wear comfortable clothes to avoid dehydration. Who knows, you might even need to climb to the top of a nearby hill just to find the Pokémon you're looking for!

Have fun while being aware of your surroundings – Holding your phone in public can possibly attract thieves who may steal your phone. You might be also too distracted around you when you are enjoying too much of the game so be alert by keeping on the lookout from time to time!

Items are not unlimited – Playing Pokémon Go in the early stage might get you carried away in your excitement to catch Pokémon. Just remember that PokéBalls and other items are not unlimited, so use them wisely.

When catching Pokémon, keep the Pokémon centered in your camera frame so you can catch them more accurately. Don’t worry though, Poké Balls can always be acquired in PokéStops, or if you do ever run out of Poké Balls, you can purchase in bulk using PokéCoins.

Need PokéCoins? With Globe, you can easily buy more on Google Play via the hassle free Direct Carrier Billing so you can easily charge to your postpaid bill or prepaid credits!

Go to convergence areas for more PokéStops – PokéStops are there to provide you items to help you catch Pokémon, and can sometimes be spots where Pokémon can appear when lure modules are applied. PokéStops are most likely located in nearby convergence areas such as malls, parks, basketball courts or even mural paintings and statues. PokéStops refresh in a few minutes, so just keep on collecting items!

Watch out for PokéStops with lots of petals! This means that someone has activated a lure module in that PokéStop, and nearby Pokémon will be attracted to it for 30 minutes. You can activate this too by purchasing Lure Modules using PokéCoins.

Hint: You can check out for potential PokéStop and Pokémon Gym locations, as Pokémon GO uses the same data collected and used by the game Ingress, which is also developed by Niantic.

Form a team! – Are you team Instinct, Mystic or Valor? Once you reach level 5 you have to choose which side you will be. It’s best to form a team within your neighborhood or friends, this will give you better advantage to certain situations such as taking over Gyms, which allows you to gain prestige for your team, allowing more Pokémon from your team to defend the Gym. Plus, if one of your Pokémon is defending the gym, you can get PokéCoins for free every 21 hours your Pokémon is in the gym.

Choose Pikachu! – You can easily get Pikachu from the start of your game, simply ignore any of the starter Pokémon Charmander, Squirtle or Bulbasaur, that might appear around you. Walk around for 3-5 times. Eventually Pikachu will appear and you will be able to capture the iconic Pokémon.

Transfer duplicate Pokémon for candy – Catching Pokémon might get you a lot of the same kind of Pokémon. Got 10 Pidgeys you say? Transfer your weakest 9 Pidgeys to Professor Willow for Pidgey candies!

You can transfer these duplicate Pokémon into candies if you hand them over to Professor Willow. Candies are necessary to increase the combat power (CP) and other stats of your Pokémon. Gain enough candies and you can evolve your Pokémon to its stronger form.

Pro-tip: Always transfer the duplicates with the lowest combat power (CP).

Eggs will make you travel – Hatching eggs will require you to travel a lot, make sure you always have an egg in the incubator to get the most of your travel. Eggs right now can hatch from distances of 10km, 5km or 2km depending on how rare the Pokémon is inside.

Level up fast - make the most out of your Pokémon adventure by using Lucky Eggs, which doubles the experience you gain from the game. Couple this with using lures or incense to catch more Pokémon. The more Pokémon you catch, the more experience you gain!

Pokémon GO just started its wave in the Philippines, and more and more trainers will venture to try out the new game and competition will get more intense in the coming days.

These tips will surely get you ahead of others. Playing Pokémon Go will get you hooked and it’s best to get the most of the trend. Globe offers 7 free days of access of Pokémon GO via the Globe Switch app, so you can maximize your data and enjoy playing without worries.

So go get your gear ready and catch ‘em all!

Pinoy Short Film Competes in Greece

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The Filipino short film “Pipo,” which centers on a boy’s dream of having his family picture taken despite the odds, continues to establish its presence on the world stage after being officially selected to compete at the IndieCrete International Film Festival from August 19 to 21 at the Paradiso Theater in Crete, Greece.

Maliksi Morales stars as the boy who comes up with a lot of ideas, including making up rumors to convince an old photographer, played by Lou Veloso, to take a picture of his family at a bargain price. Chanel Latorre, Ramon Palencia, and Katherine Carel provide support as members of Pipo’s family.

Aside from showing problems caused by poverty and environmental concerns through the boy’s story, award-winning filmmaker Richard Soriano Legaspi says that his film also pays tribute to manual film cameras and all the photographers who we often forget to thank for documenting precious moments in our lives.

Before vying for several awards, including Best Film, Drama award and others, in the Summer Edition of the film festival, “Pipo” also competed in the U.S., Colombia, India, Malta, Portugal, Taiwan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mexico, Germany, United Arab Emirates, and another Greek film festival in Athens.

Danish Film Starring Mercedes Cabral Premieres at Cinemalaya

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The Danish film “Rosita,” in which acclaimed actress Mercedes Cabral plays the title role, will have its Asian and Philippine premiere at the 12th Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival on August 13, Saturday, 6:15 p.m. at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater).

Cabral, who portrays a Filipina mail-order bride torn between an old man and his son, will grace the film’s screening, which is part of Cinemalaya’s “Indie Nation” section. She's known for her remarkable roles in Brillante Mendoza’s award-winning films “Serbis,” “Kinatay,” and “Thy Womb” before she won her first Best Actress award at the 2015 World Premieres Film Festival for Alvin Yapan’s “An Kubo sa Kawayanan.”
It was Mendoza who recommended Cabral to Danish filmmaker Frederikke Aspöck when they met at the Marrakech Film Festival in Morocco. Aspöck eventually won Best Director for “Rosita” at the Moscow International Film Festival last year. She broke into the international film festival scene when she bagged the Premier Prix de la Cinéfondation at the Cannes Film Festival in 2004 for her short film “Happy Now.” The female director’s feature film debut “Labrador” (Out of Bounds) also made the rounds of international film festivals and also got favorable nods from critics worldwide.

In “Rosita,” Cabral stars with internationally recognized Danish actors Jens Albinus, who portrays the middle-aged widower Ulrik, and Mikkel Boe Følsgaard, who plays the role of his son Johannes, along with Julie Agnete Vang, Mads Riisom, Lise Baastrup, and Jacob Moth-Poulsen.

IPC Urges PH Biz to Innovate with Digital Work Tools

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Local cloud services pioneer IPC (IP Converge Data Services, Inc.) recently announced that it will be holding regular digital enterprise innovation seminars for business owners and entrepreneurs, free of charge.

Entitled “Gear up to Innovate: An essential blueprint for digital transformation”, the session aims to emphasize to Filipino businesses the importance of taking on a digital mindset in today’s highly connected world. Insights about digital best practices will be shared and the most relevant cloud-based business tools will be explored in-depth.

“Digital is the new Normal. If a company doesn't take advantage of today’s plethora of readily available enterprise applications, it runs the risk of being left behind by competition who do,” said Niño Valmonte, Director for Product Management & Marketing at IPC. “Doing business in this day and age compels us to adopt a digital mindset, and the fastest and most cost-efficient way to do it is through the cloud.”

Attendees will be engaged in an immersive demo of collaborative business applications and witness how workplace productivity can be elevated through these tools. More importantly, IPC will elaborate on the effective ways to migrate business processes to the cloud.

The “Gear up to Innovate” seminar series starts on August 19, 2016 and will run until the end of the year. It will be held at 1:30 PM - 5:50 PM on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from there on at 34F RCBC Plaza Tower 2, Ayala Avenue, Makati City.

Participants will be accommodated on a first come, first served basis. To register, visit

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Taxes Every Future Homeowner Should Keep In Mind

Wazzup Pilipinas!

Lamudi lists down legal dues that you need to know to be a responsible homeowner.

Due diligence does not stop when you have raised the amount you need to acquire a property. The responsibility of a homeowner starts as soon as the deed of sale is signed and goes on until forever. Thus, while you are preparing for your monthly amortization, it is best to familiarize yourself with the taxes and legal fees that you are about to face.

Real estate buying is a tedious process both financially and legally. However, property assets and investments that will soon be under your name and inside your pocket is definitely worth the trouble. To arm your property purchase, Lamudi Philippines lists down the basics that are essential to know.

Real Property Tax

One major law relating to owning a home is paying the Real Property Tax (RPT) every year. Once you step into your new home, it is advisable to have it appraised and assessed for accurate taxation values. All real property are evaluated according to current and fair market value prevailing in the locality where the property is situated. Owners will pay an RPT rate of 2% on properties in cities and municipalities in Metro Manila, while 1% if the property is located in the provinces.

It is imperative to always pay the RPT on time for it will incur penalties that will add burden to your tax obligations. Delinquent payments subject the payer to payment interest at the rate of 2% per month delayed to a maximum of 72% or 36 months. Then again, while late payments are crucial, paying in advance is also rewarding. Discounts are given to homeowners who settle their taxes beforehand.

For taxpayer’s conveniences, other payment options are also available. The RPT can be paid in full or annually and by installment or quarterly. For yearly schedule, payment is due on or before the 31st of January each year, while paying quarterly must be consistently paid on these dates: first quarter, on or before March 31; second quarter, on or before June 30; third quarter, on or before September 30; and on or before December 31 for the fourth quarter.

For payment or to inquire on your home’s RPT, just go to the Treasurer’s Office of the city or municipality where your property is located.

Aside from the Real Property Tax, there are other fees that are equally important. These fees and taxes for real estate transactions in the country are usually divided between the buyer and the seller and are subject to mutual agreement. However, the Contract of Sale or the Deed of Sale must specifically declare the parties in charge of shouldering the costs to avoid confusion or legal problems.

Capital Gains Tax and Other Taxes

The seller’s responsibilities includes Capital Gain Tax, which is 6% of the selling price, zonal value, or fair market value of the property, whichever is higher; and the Business Tax, if applicable, the rate of which will depend on the LGU where the property is located.

On the other hand, the buyer’s accountabilities is comprised of the following:

     Documentary Stamps Tax – 1.5% of selling price or Zonal Value, whichever is higher
     Transfer Tax – rate depends on location of property (ranging from 0.25% to 0.75% of selling price or zonal value, whichever is higher)
     Registration Fee or the graduated rate based on the selling price

Owning a house is a lifetime responsibility, so to break free from possible legal problems in the future, it is best to be familiar and reliable in doing your duties and responsibilities as a taxpayer and as a homeowner.

DOE Taps USAID for Review of Energy Mix

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The Department of Energy is tapping technical experts to discuss possible collaboration in coming up with a responsive and dynamic energy mix for the Philippines.

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi met with members of the USAID’s Building Low Emission Alternatives to Develop Economic Resilience and Sustainability (B-LEADERS) recently to discuss the formulation of an optimal energy mix and look into local reserve requirements.

“Our main concern now is to increase the availability of quality, reliable, secure and affordable supply,” Secretary Cusi said, stressing the need for power supply amidst the fluctuating power supply situation of the county.

“We are also looking at establishing an “army of reserves” so that when there is lack of supply, we have something to rely on,” he added.

The DOE will be coordinating with the USAID B-Leaders and will form a team that will conduct a review of the current energy mix.

“We want to be certain on the decisions that we will make in order to entice more investments.” Sec. Cusi said.

The study will focus on the energy requirements for economic growth trends, load consumption profiles for energy consumers, emerging energy technologies and local industry readiness, transmission configurations and network development. The team will also look into the availability of indigenous energy for ensuring stable pricing to lessen dependence on energy that is dependent on international market prices.

NBA Store Philippines Celebrates 10 Years of NBA Cares by Supporting Filipino Education Initiative

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The three NBA Stores in the Philippines, which are managed by International Athletic Trading Company, Inc. (IATC), announced today the launch of a retail promotion to support Knowledge Channel Foundation, Inc. (KCFI) in providing more Filipinos with access to quality education.

To commemorate the 10-year anniversary of NBA Cares, the league’s global social responsibility program, all three NBA Stores in the Philippines will donate a portion of NBA Name & Number T-shirt sale proceeds from Aug. 10 to Sept. 13 to KCFI. Proceeds from this initiative will fund the foundation’s education program focused on providing multimedia learning resources for students in grades K-12 and training teachers from public schools in the National Capital Region of Luzon.

“As an organization, we are aware of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and how achieving inclusive and quality education is a global priority,” said IATC President and CEO Melvin Lloyd Lim. “We value this opportunity to work with Knowledge Channel Foundation and look forward to bringing this program to life as our own way of giving back to the Philippine education system.”

“We want to provide the Filipino children with multimedia learning resources that provide an enriching academic journey,” said Knowledge Channel Foundation, Inc. President Rina Lopez Bautista. “Given the popularity of the NBA in the Philippines, we are excited to see how this initiative will enable more people to contribute to our mission of uplifting the lives of fellow Filipinos from poverty through education.”

KCFI is a not-for-profit organization helping empower Filipinos through educational media for the past 17 years. Knowledge Channel’s on-air, online and on-demand educational videos and other multimedia learning resources are accessible to more than 5 million learners in both formal and alternative learning systems in an estimated 6,000 schools and learning centers nationwide. In addition, KCFI is immersed in training teachers and stakeholders who implement the KCFI educational program in the Philippines.

NBA Name & Number T-shirts are part of the comprehensive selection of authentic NBA merchandise available at all three NBA Stores in the Philippines, which also offer official jerseys, footwear, performance gear, lifestyle apparel, basketballs, toys and collectibles. The NBA Stores at Glorietta 3, Mega Fashion Hall and TriNoma carry products from all 30 NBA teams, and feature brands such as 2K Sports, adidas, Mitchell & Ness, New Era, Panini, Spalding, Stance, and many more.

For more information on Knowledge Channel Foundation, visit and follow the official Facebook page ( For all the latest news and updates on the NBA Stores in the Philippines and the NBA, and follow us on Facebook (, Twitter ( and Instagram (@nbastoreph).

Hontiveros: Imprisonment Awaits Hospitals Violating Anti-Hospital Deposit Law

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Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros is pushing for a 4-6 year imprisonment for hospital administrators and officials who are guilty of violating the Anti-Hospital Deposit Law.

Hontiveros, who is the Chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health, filed Senate Bill No. 216 that seeks to amend the existing Anti-Hospital Deposit Law and impose stricter penalties.

"Emergency-case patients are in life-and-death situations", Hontiveros explained. "The state must do its best to provide hospital and medical services to the people. The government must guarantee that they will not be denied hospital treatment just because they cannot give an advance payment," Hontiveros said.

Hontiveros' bill proposes a 4-6 year imprisonment for erring hospital administrators and officials who demand any deposit or other form of advance payment, as a prerequisite for admission or medical treatment of an emergency patient. In addition, from the current PhP 100,000, Hontiveros' bill seeks to raise the maximum penalty to PhP 1,000,000.

The Senator explained that harsher penalties will ensure compliance, especially if it includes eventual revocation of hospitals' licenses to operate. “Upon three (3) repeated violations committed pursuant to an established policy of the hospital or clinic or upon instruction of its management, the health facility’s license to operate shall be revoked by the Department of Health”, includes the bill filed by Hontiveros.

However, Hontiveros was quick to say that her bill provides tax deduction for hospitals that will admit indigent or poor patients in cases of emergency. "I am confident that majority of our hospitals are compliant with the law. We will make sure that their efforts in partnership with government hospitals to help close the public health care gap are duly recognized," she said.

Early this year, University of Santo Tomas (UST) Hospital came under fire when Andrew Pelayo took to social media to air his grievance regarding his wife’s miscarriage due to the hospital’s refusal to provide treatment before any deposit was made.

"Kahit saan natin tignan, mas mahalaga ang buhay ng tao kaysa anumang deposito. Ang deposito ay mababayaran. Ang buhay na nawala ay hindi maibabalik o matatawaran," Hontiveros concluded.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Home Credit and Samsung Bring Back its Samsung Galaxy J Series Promo

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Due to popular demand, Home Credit Philippines and Samsung Philippines have decided to bring back the Samsung Galaxy J Series Promo where consumers can get a hold of the latest Samsung Galaxy J5 2016 and J7 2016 at 0% interest from August 5 to September 4, 2016.

Home Credit Philippines is a consumer financing company that offers easy, simple, and fast loan installment plans to Filipinos. The company only requires two valid IDs and an initial cash-out for the loan application. The approval process can take as little as 15 minutes, after which the consumers can take their Samsung J Series phones home.

"Our first 0% promo with Samsung for the J Series smartphones last summer was a huge success, and there is demand from customers even after the promo was over,” remarked Home Credit Philippines’ Head of Sales, Adam Bernasek. “So it was a very easy decision for us to bring back the promo with Samsung, and help more people get their hands on the amazing J Series phones.”

Customers may avail of the Samsung Galaxy J5 2016 for as low as ₱1,199 per month, or the Samsung Galaxy J7 2016 at ₱1,499 on instalment-basis for 6 months, through any of Home Credit’s retail partners.

The all-new Samsung Galaxy J5 and J7 2016 both feature 48GB memory, which can store thousands of selfies. At the same time, both units feature two new technologies, Signal Max and Ultra Data Saving, both first launched in the Philippines through the J5 and J7 2016. Signal Max provides for wider signal coverage and enhanced call quality. While its Ultra Data Saving feature enables consumers to save up to 50% on their mobile data consumption. Imagine how many more additional hours of internet browsing, video and music streaming, and photo uploads you can do with these savings. They also feature HD Super AMOLED displays, for true-to-life colors and clearer and deeper images. They even have improved cameras, with a 13MP back and 5MP front camera, f/1.9 aperture and LED front flash, both units produce high-quality pictures even in low-light conditions. They also come with 3,100 mAh and 3,300 mAh, for J5 and J7 2016 respectively. On top of these, they also feature Ultra Power Saving to help extend battery life, as well LTE Dual SIM, for added convenience.

"We are happy to be providing Filipinos the option to purchase the gadgets, appliances, and electronics they need via affordable loan installments, allowing them to manage their finances better. And we are very fortunate to have partners like Samsung who share the same vision," said Bernasek.

For more information, please visit

Another Podium in Team Suzuki Pilipinas’ Belt at SAC Round 4

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And the Philippine flag is on the podium once again in the international racing scene! Amidst the very tough races, Team Suzuki Pilipinas made sure that they got a podium on their belt when they go home. 

In a series of heart pounding laps, April King Mascardo, Eane Jaye (EJ) Sobretodo and Mario Borbon Jr. battled it hard with their equally strong contenders to win a trophy. The race track was bumpy and tricky but first timer Sobretodo was able to lead the pack of riders on Race 1 when teammate April got an overshoot after leading the first laps of the competition. However, the chicane caused him to overshoot as well, resulting to a crash. 

The team concluded with 5th for Mascardo, 9th for Borbon Jr. and 11th for Sobretodo – all riders with improved lap times. On Race 2, EJ took the lead but was cornered by his equally aggressive contenders. 

This gave the chance to April to advance into the race. Positioning first on the last lap, April went fast and got out of the pack giving chance to other contenders Jefri Tosema of Indonesia and Rozaliman Zakaria of Malaysia to get in the lead. 

Hollywood Child Star Millie Bobby Brown to Bring ‘Stranger Things’ Phenomenon to AsiaPOP Comicon Manila 2016

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Things take a turn for the stranger as AsiaPOP Comicon Manila 2016 (APCC Manila) confirmed Hollywood child actress Millie Bobby Brown as the latest celebrity guest of the biggest pop culture gathering happening from August 26 to 28 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City.

Brown is most known for her current role in the ongoing sci-fi thriller series Stranger Things, in which she stars opposite Winona Ryder and David Harbour. Her portrayal of the enigmatic Eleven earned her high praises, including that of chief TV critic Maureen Ryan.

She wrote, “Millie Bobby Brown is about to be cast in a lot of projects. With a very small number of lines, Brown gave an indelible performance as Eleven; the ways she subtly yet movingly conveyed fear, sadness, doubt, love and a yearning for connection will stay with me for a long time.”

Previously, Brown was cast after an extensive search as a lead in the series Intruders, opposite Oscar winner Mira Sorvino and John Simm. Brown also took on a recurring role in the series Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, as Young Alice. She has also guested in a number of cult favorites such as Modern Family, NCIS, and Grey's Anatomy.

beep Card Starts Limited Public Trial in CAVITEX

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AF Payments Inc. announced that it is expanding for the first time to toll ways, with the Cavite Expressway (CAVITEX) starting its limited public trial on Monday, August 8.

All types of beep tap-and-go cards, including PayMaya beep cards will be accepted as payment at CAVITEX for the toll fees of Class 1 vehicles. The fee is P24 if exiting in Parañaque, and P64 if in Kawit.

beep cards can be purchased or reloaded at the Parañaque Customer Service Center during the public trial phase.

The CAVITEX is a 14-km expressway along the coast of Bacoor Bay, south of Roxas Boulevard. This road project aimed to strengthen the commercial link between Metro Manila and the nearby provinces of Cavite, Laguna, and Batangas, as well as ease traffic in major thoroughfares in the south.

“Extending the use of beep cards as a payment option at CAVITEX represents another step towards making the beep card an all-in-one travel card for commuters and even private vehicle owners. We hope that the low cost of the beep card (P20) and the wide network of loading options being developed will appeal to drivers who pass along CAVITEX and are interested in passing the toll gates more quickly” said Peter Maher, CEO and President of AF Payments Inc.

“This partnership is a welcome development. The management of CAVITEX is proud to be part of the modernization of different aspects of travel in the Philippines. Now, even private vehicle owners and their passengers can feel the benefits of having the beep™ card,” said J. Luigi L. Bautista, CAVITEX President and CEO.

All beep tap-and-go cards including PayMaya beep cards are accepted in all three elevated railways (LRT 1, LRT 2, and MRT 3) and select bus lines.

The beep card is a tap-and-go payment system accepted in all three elevated railways (LRT 1, LRT 2, and MRT 3) and select bus lines. It can be purchased for P20, is reloadable and valid for four years. More information about beep is available at <> and on Facebook (beep card) and Twitter (@beep_card).

DOE-IIEE Join Forces to Audit the Country’s Power System

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The Department of Energy (DOE) signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Institute of Integrated Electrical Engineers of the Philippines (IIEE) on 8 August 2016. The parties agreed to organize Task Forces consisting of DOE personnel and IIEE members that will conduct the technical audit of the generation, transmission and distribution facilities in the country.

Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi said: “It is imperative for us to immediately determine the causes, whether technical or contractual, of the current power supply situation. We have to find a lasting solution to this recurring problem as well as establishing and institutionalizing far-reaching formulae, because it is our people who are bearing the brunt of power interruptions and we cannot allow that to continue.”

On a pro-bono basis, the DOE tapped IIEE for being the only Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC)-accredited professional association in the field of electrical engineering with the necessary technical knowledge, expertise and competence to assist the DOE in addressing the current power situation. The IIEE has 47,000 licensed and competent electrical engineers and master electricians across the country.

Pursuant to the Electric Power Industry Reform Act (EPIRA), the DOE and IIEE agreed to look into current mechanisms aimed at ensuring the safety, efficiency, quality, reliability and security of the power system.

The audit is also envisioned to disentangle and unbundle the flaws in the generation-transmission-distribution chain that cause deficiencies in our power supply.

The agreement was brought to the table because of the recent spate of power supply reserve deficiencies due to forced outages of major plants in Luzon. These deficiencies resulted to rotational brownouts in Metro Manila and nearby provinces in the past few days.

Present during the signing ceremony were (L-R) IIEE National President Larry C. Cruz and DOE Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi, along with Atty. Felix Wimpy Fuentebella, DOE Spokesperson; Mr. Ramon P. Ayaton, Executive Director; Engr. Rogelio M. Avenido, 1986 National President; Engr. Alex C. Cabugao, 2014 National President; Engr. Florigo C. Varona, VP for External Affairs; Pete L. Ilagan, DOE Spokesperson; Engr. Florencio D. Berenguel, National Auditor; Engr. Ariel P. Duran, Former Metro Manila Regional Governor; Engr. Hipolito A. Leoncio, 2008 National President; Atty. Gerardo D. Erguiza Jr.; Engr. Arwin L. Ardon, PNOC-RC President and Dir. Arthus T. Tenazas, DOE Legal Services.

The DOE assures the public that it continues to monitor the developments in the power industry and to exhaust all possible measures to resolve the power supply situation in the country.

Globe Telecom Positions Davao in Global Connectivity Map

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Globe Telecom is positioning Davao in the global connectivity map by aggressively building on its network infrastructure in the city that includes the construction of the Philippine end of an international undersea cable system, the only facility of such kind in the country to directly connect Davao with the rest of the world.

“Both facilities will help underpin local economic growth as it will provide support for the expanding business requirement for data not only in Mindanao region but also in the country as a whole. Both the data center and the undersea cable systems are critical in ensuring the resiliency of the country’s internet connectivity with the rest of world, particularly US, where much of internet content is sourced,” said Globe President & CEO Ernest Cu.

The two facilities will play a major role in providing the ideal IT Infrastructure and International connectivity requirement not only of businesses located in Davao, but also for enterprises in Luzon and Visayas in line with the company’s vision of enhancing business capacities of enterprises and help usher the Philippines to become a digital nation, said Cu. "Enterprises located in northern and central Philippines may consider the data center as the primary site for Mindanao and secondary site of Luzon and Visayas in the event of natural or man-made disasters, explained Cu, emphasizing that the two facilities will help strengthen the company’s overall network resiliency ensuring its customers will have seamless connectivity, and providing constant support for next-generation technologies."

According to him, the data center, which is situated in the same location as the SEA-US cable landing station, will cater to BPOs, financial institutions, internet service providers and other content providers in southern Philippines. The project, once completed, will address ICT requirements of major trade and industry centers in Mindanao region, he emphasized.

Cu explained the Globe Business’ Davao Data Center is the best location for customers looking for a data center in the Mindanao region as it is located within the region’s central business hubs. He said the facility is Seismic Zone 4 compliant, which means that it has been retrofitted for earthquake safety. Also, infrastructure and redundant security solutions have been put in place to ensure that systems remain continuously available and secure. The data center is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2017.

The SEA-US cable system, on the other hand, will ease the country’s dependence on international cable systems routed through northern Philippines, said Cu. This could prevent a repeat of a 2008 incident where major international cables were broken because of the Taiwan earthquake. As a result, the Philippines became isolated for a few days in terms of internet connectivity.

To date, Globe already completed the construction of the Davao Power Feed Equipment, a facility that will address the energy requirement of SEA-US cable system. At a project cost of approximately $250 million, the SEA-US undersea cable system will provide superior latency, delivering an additional 20 Terabits per/second capacity, utilizing the latest 100 gigabits per second transmission technology. Such additional capacity will cater to the exponential growth of bandwidth between the two continents.

The SEA-US cable is being built by a consortium of 7 international telecommunication companies, that include Globe Telecom and will link 5 countries and territories that include Manado (Indonesia), Davao (Philippines), Piti (Guam), Oahu (Hawaii, United States) and Los Angeles (California, United States). The SEA-US project will be approximately 15,000 kilometers in length, provides route diversity from the North Pacific, avoiding earthquake prone areas in East Asia. The cable system is expected to provide more efficient connectivity to approximately 1.5 billion people. Aside from Globe Telecom, members of the SEA-US consortium include PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia International (Telin), Telkom USA, GTI Corporation (a member of the Globe Group of companies), RAM Telecom International (RTI), Teleguam Holdings (GTA) and Hawaiian Telcom (HTEL).

In addition to the construction of the data center and the SEA-US undersea cable system, the telecommunications operator is also embarking on an aggressive deployment of fiber-optic broadband technology and utilization of additional spectrum assets such as those in the 700 megahertz (MHz), 1800 MHz and 2600 MHz bands in Davao City. Furthermore, Globe is also rolling out a fiber optic cable system in the country, including Davao. The objective is to create an internet superhighway by deploying fiber in 20,000 barangays by 2020 and provide ultra-fast internet access to around 2 million homes nationwide.

*Photo Caption: Globe President & CEO Ernest Cu (2nd from right) and Davao City chairman of the Association of Barangay Captains and Councilor January Duterte (3rd from left) lead the opening of the power feed equipment site of the SEA-US cable landing facility located in Barangay Talomo, Davao City.

PH Auto Industry Vehicle Sales Exceed Expectations

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Carmudi Philippines—the local arm for the leading vehicle platform around the world—expressed confidence that online vehicle sales in the country will follow suit over the stellar sales performance achieved by the local automotive industry in closing the second quarter of 2016.

Carmudi Philippines Managing Director Abhi Mohan said that following the high vehicle sales numbers, they are expecting constant growth on all sectors concerning vehicle sales.

“We believe that the online sales atmosphere would follow suit in providing a strong commercial environment for the local automotive industry. For example, since more and more people are buying brand-new units, more pre-owned vehicles will be up for sale,” he explained.

He was referring to the 167,481 sales record posted by the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) for the first six months of 2016, posting a 27.4 percent surge against the 131,465 sales tallied in the same period last year. The said figures also surpassed highest monthly record.

Citing his previous claim that vehicle sales for the second and third quarter of 2016 would pose a challenge in the annual sales target for the year, Mohan now expresses confidence that those numbers will be met, and eventually exceeded.

“I could never be happier that I was wrong regarding the turnout of sales. This proves that the Philippine automotive industry would enjoy a remarkable sales performance all throughout the year,” Mohan said.

According to Mohan, he was surprised to learn about the figures, saying that despite the challenges for June, automotive sales remain stellar.

Medical Series Set In A World Of Crime And Mystery Enthralls Viewers With Its Dark Charm

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Phenomenal TV series Body of Proof proves to be a masterful piece of work which mesmerizes viewers with the shadowy appeal of each episode.

Dr. Megan Hunt was the head neurosurgeon at a Philadelphia hospital. She eventually lost her job due to an unfortunate accident which caused her to have paresthesia, a condition brought about by severe nerve damage and which brings about tingling and numbness to her hands. Without prior awareness of the condition, she performed an operation in which the patient died.

After a few years, Dr. Hunt was able to acquire a job as a medical examiner. Considering her extensive experience as a medical practitioner, she is able to dig deeper into some of the most mind-boggling crimes performed on a dead person’s body. Mimicking a seemingly modern day Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Hunt utilizes extraordinary ways of solving the puzzles. While on the job, she is supported by her boss, Dr. Kate Murphy, and her fellow medical examiner, Peter Dunlop, who is a former policeman. Dr. Hunt may be the best in her field, but how does she juggle her personal and work life with the pressures from the police department?

Body of Proof is created by Christopher Murphey. It stars Dana Delaney as Dr. Megan Hunt, Jeri Ryan as Dr. Kate Murphy, and Nicholas Bishop as Peter Dunlop.

Catch Body of Proofon Sony Channel everyThursday at 8:50pm.

Sony Channel is available on SKYCable Channel 35, Cignal Digital TV Channel 60, Destiny Cable Channel 62, Cable Link Channel 39.

Hontiveros to Duterte: You Can’t Destroy Oligarchy by Giving Marcos a Hero’s Burial

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“For someone who publicly disapproves of oligarchs, President Duterte’s decision to give the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos a hero’s burial is the height of contradiction.”

This was the statement issued today by Akbayan Senator Risa Hontiveros as she opposed the plan by the government to bury the remains of Marcos at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (LNMB).

In a resolution she filed on Monday, Hontiveros said that allowing the former President to be buried at the cemetery will only cause further divisiveness and reopen old wounds, especially as the country is in the process of providing reparations to Martial Law victims.

“President Duterte cannot end the rule of oligarchs in the country by honoring the very man who created a crony oligarchy during Martial Law,” Hontiveros said.

Hontiveros argued that Marcos does not qualify to be buried at the heroes' cemetery. She said that while the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) regulation regarding the allocation of cemetery plots at the LNMB allows for the burial of former presidents, an exception was provided for those who were convicted of offenses involving moral turpitude.

“In the case of Hilao v. Estate of Marcos, the jury found the estate of defendant Ferdinand Marco liable to 10,059 plaintiffs for the acts of torture, summary execution and disappearance. This conviction should suffice to disqualify Marcos from being buried at the heroes’ cemetery,” Hontiveros explained.

The neophyte senator said that the Duterte government should just lay the remains of the late strongman in his hometown or some other place “that will not serve to distort history, assail democracy and insult all those who fought and died to end the dictatorship.”

“This is the more appropriate resolution that the government can pursue on this matter rather than yield to the Marcoses’ attempt to paint a rosy picture of the dictatorship, rehabilitate their image and whitewash their crimes against the people,” Hontiveros ended.

‘Teen Wolf’ Star Holland Roden to Fly to Manila for AsiaPOP Comicon 2016

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Things are looking to be monsterrific as AsiaPOP Comicon Manila 2016 (APCC Manila) revealed Hollywood actress Holland Roden, as the latest celebrity guest to invade the biggest pop culture gathering slated on August 26 to 28 at the SMX Convention Center in Pasay City.

Roden is best known for playing the smart and beautiful Lydia Martin on the MTV series Teen Wolf. She has also played supporting roles in other popular series such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Lost, Community, Criminal Minds, and Grey's Anatomy. She is also a host for MTV, doing various fashion and entertainment segments for the channel,, and the brand MTVStyle.

For the fans of Roden, APCC Manila is offering Autograph and Photograph session tickets with the stunning celebrity, which will be available soon for purchase on SM Tickets website,, or at all SM Tickets outlets. Autograph and Photograph tickets will also be available for purchase on event days.

APCC Manila 2016 tickets are now available via SM Tickets with ticket prices PhP550 (one-day pass), PhP850 (two-day pass), and PhP1,050 (three-day pass). All these will give the ticketholder access to stage activities, performances, and the main show floor. The event is free for children aged five years and below for all days, but a valid identification is required for verification purposes before entering the show floor.

A special Geek Bundle is also available at PhP3500 for the FIRST 100 customers which includes an event lanyard, tote bag, cape, a 3-day pass, and a 1/12 Iron Man Mark XL "Shotgun" collectible figure from Comicave Studios.

For more information and event updates, please visit

and official Facebook Page

Fortinet FortiGuard Labs Cites Increased Cyber Threat Activity in Brazil

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Fortinet’s FortiGuard Labs cybersecurity threat report takes a look at the nature of attacks – how attackers get in, how they manage to persist inside networks, what they want, and who they are. It also provides insight into three key areas of concern that our FortiGuard Labs team has identified, and they bear reviewing here.

2016 Rio Olympics:

Cyberattacks during the Olympic games are not new. We have seen a spike of attacks focused on the Olympics – including targeting vendors and spectators – beginning as far back as the 2004 Summer Olympics in Greece. However, there are three main reasons why the 2016 Rio Olympics deserves special attention:

1. Analysis seems to indicate that cyberthreats and attacks are not (yet) a priority for Brazil. According to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) ranking of global risks, Brazil only ranks concerns about cyberattacks as #23, and data fraud/theft at #16. This is concerning since countries like the US, Japan, Germany, Netherlands, and a few others rank cyberattacks as their #1 business risk. Given the high profile of the Olympic games, we would expect the risks of cyberattack and data theft to be ranked much higher for Brazil.

2. The volume of malicious and phishing artifacts (i.e. domain names and URLs) in Brazil is on the rise. In June, Brazil’s percentage increase was higher in three of four categories in Fortinet’s report when compared with the global percentage increase. The highest percentage growth was in the malicious URL category at 83% compared to 16% for the rest of the world.

3. As the 2016 Rio Olympics unfold, the history of these increased attacks will undoubtedly continue and FortiGuard Labs is already seeing indicators of repeat techniques such as domain lookalikes for payment fraud and malicious websites or URLs targeting event and government officials.

“Behavior Blending”:
We are seeing signs of increasingly sophisticated methods to help attackers persist inside systems they have breached. It is something we call “behavior blending.”

As the name implies, behavior blending is a technique used by criminals that allows them to blend in with everyone else on a compromised network. Once an attacker succeeds in acquiring valid user credentials, they proceed to assume the identity of the user through monitoring and learning the online behaviors of the authorized credential owner. They then attempt mimic as closely as possible the normal behavior patterns of that user. This allows them to remain unnoticed by the latest generation of automated analysis tools searching for anomalous behaviors.

Of course, this requires considerable research for success. As it’s very difficult to understand and replicate normal behavior patterns right away, we have been able to identify threat actors before they become camouflaged. Traditionally, this sort of obfuscation is difficult even for seasoned penetration experts with authorized access to systems. But new tools are emerging to speed up and enhance this process. Because this evasion technique has a lot of potential for thwarting detection, we expect to see more of it as the technique is refined and new tools are developed to better mimic the behavior of a credentialed target. It also represents a new challenge for defenders and security vendors looking to identify sophisticated attacks based on behavior analysis.

Increased Threats:

Overall, we continue to see an increase in threat activity. This isn’t news, per se, but the implications are worth considering.

First, we are seeing the return of old threats and attack vectors, as well as the continued persistence of classic attacks, such as Conficker and ransomware, through updated variants. Of course, this begs the question: Why, after all the money and research being spent on security, are not only the number of attacks increasing, but many older attacks continuing to persist? Surely, the sophisticated cybercriminal community wouldn’t still be using these if they weren’t successful.

The answer, of course, is complicated. New user devices and applications, new communications methods, the rise of virtualized and cloud-based networking, and things like IoT continue to expand the attack surface. And many organizations continue to adopt and deploy these new technologies before security has rotated to protect them. And far too many organizations are simply skating by on doing the absolute minimum hoping they get overlooked, or because the tradeoff between productivity and security seems too high.

But there is another issue at work here: it’s the industry’s general approach to security that is a critical part of the problem. It’s clear that increased spending on traditional, isolated security devices isn't working, because networks are still getting broken into pretty consistently. Like the old saying goes, we keep doing the same thing over and over again hoping for a different result. It turns out that the classic arms race approach is a zero sum game.

Companies need something different. Which is why Fortinet, the original innovator of cutting edge ASIC technology designed to increase performance while keeping costs under control, has recently announced the Fortinet Security Fabric.

Of course, a number of vendors have made noise about security platforms and solutions. But until now, none have truly delivered an integrated security architecture designed to unify management, centralize and coordinate threat detection and intelligence, and provide a dynamically coordinated response to threats anywhere across the distributed network, from IoT to the cloud. The Fortinet Security Fabric represents a complete rethinking of how security is to be designed, implemented, and managed, allowing organizations to stop playing catch-up with cybercriminals and finally get out in front of the threat community.

Download and read the report.

Learn more about the Fortinet Security Fabric.

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