Lopez Group chairman and Philippine Ambassador to Japan Manuel M. Lopez (AMML) urged senior executives of the Lopez Group to learn from the lessons of Wall Street and operate in “nearcrisis mode” in order to sustain the growth trajectory of the Group in the next five years.
“The Philippine economy may seem immune to world economic turbulence but in the end, we are not, and we have to be prepared for anything. Let us not be blindsided by all the favorable reviews of our economy and forget that good as our economy may seem to be, we still have to operate in a world where two of the most important economies are in serious trouble,” AMML said, referring to Europe and the US.
Speaking at the start of the 2012 midyear performance review, AMML expressed confidence that Lopez Group leaders will exercise caution and prudence, as well as be ready with the right response for eventualities.
Razor-sharp risk management
“We need to be as slim as we can be but as effective as we have always been. We have to make sure that our risk management is always razor sharp. We must make sure we do not suffer again as we did during the last Asian crisis. We must learn the hard lessons that experience taught us. We must make sure no detail is neglected in our business plans that would make us vulnerable in any crisis that may affect our economy, our currency and our businesses. We must have our ears on the ground and detect dangers like the bubbles that destroyed the American economy in recent years,” the chairman said.
Lopez Group vice chairman and ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation chairman Eugenio Lopez III (EL3) echoed AMML’s confidence in the ability of the Group to scope risks and respond to crises. In his remarks to close the conference, EL3 said the Lopez Group has the benefit of experience to guide current decisions.
More stable organizational structure
“One take-away we have from the [hard] years is that we can only grow the business if we have the people. We need key competencies in place and what happened before is that we were stretched way beyond the competencies we had then. We just didn’t have the people to do it. We had no seasoned veterans then. I believe we have a much more stable organizational structure now. Junior executives are feeding the pipeline,” EL3 said.
The vice chairman reminded executives to continue developing people “with discipline and focus.” With the Lopez Group poised to double its market value in the next five years, EL3 sees ample opportunity for top performers to help the Group grow “beyond normal growth, not just to maximize shareholder value, but to keep top performers within the Group.”
EL3 said, “As our chairman (AMML) said, ‘We have to be clear on how to grow our business.’ It doesn’t mean we’re not going to take risks. We will still take risks, we will push outside the envelope, but we have to make sure the right people are in place. And we will give them [the right people] plenty of opportunity for growth across the entire Group.”
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