Year 3 of the Gawad Juan Recognition Program Soars to Greater Heights

The recognition program acknowledges outstanding efforts to improve the supplier experience

The third edition of the Gawad Juan Recognition Program proved to be bigger, better, and more hopeful for the future than ever before.

Originally stemming from Universal Robina Corporation’s desire to give recognition to employees and departments that contributed significantly to improving the supplier experience (SX), Gawad Juan has since branched out to include other strategic business units in the Gokongwei Group, in particular JG Summit Olefins Corporation and Robinsons Land Corporation, that have joined the conglomerate’s SX Community.

The 2022 awards program, held on December 14 at the Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, also lauded the business units and individual leaders who championed Agile transformation and promoted ecosystem synergy within the conglomerate, as well as the external suppliers who have become trusted, reliable, and innovative “partners of choice” in propelling the Gokongwei Group’s growth and delivering value to customers and stakeholders.

Before the main awards ceremony began, guests converged in the hotel’s ballroom where large screens showed videos describing how various business units addressed ways to improve the supplier experience, including facilitating timely payments to suppliers, and promoted greater transparency and collaboration between their departments and key Gokongwei Group stakeholders in the delivery of services, including Aspen Business Solutions and Robinsons Bank.

Alan Surposa, Senior Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer of JG Summit Holdings, kicked off the proceedings with welcome remarks that lauded the determination and perseverance of the different SX teams despite a few initial setbacks. Referencing Thomas Edison's failures before perfecting his many inventions, Surposa equated undergoing failure to learning about the ways that did not work. “The mindset of the Agile way of thinking is that failures are not really failures, it's the way to improve on the everyday challenges that we have.” Speaking about how Gawad Juan helps motivate the group’s SX community, he added, “It is easy to feel negative with our failures, that is why celebrating small steps brings us a magical, positive perspective to see them as achievements." 

In a prepared video, Lance Gokongwei, the head of the Gokongwei Group and president and CEO of JG Summit Holdings, shared his appreciation for the combined efforts to improve the supplier experience. “You have demonstrated agility, grit, and passion in delivering what is best for both our suppliers and our business,” said Gokongwei. “Through the combined efforts of our SX community, we can proudly say that the Gokongwei Group is making a positive impact on our partner suppliers. All your contributions add to improving our suppliers' experience. And with suppliers becoming our allies, opportunities for limitless growth will naturally abound. I have high hopes that the SX Team will continue to lead the community in the right direction for having a good relationship with our suppliers and being their partner of choice will allow us to serve our customers  our reason for being  better.”

URC President and CEO Irwin Lee spoke about the factors that vastly improved the company's reputation with suppliers and retailers, including its payment-on-time record and fill rate compliance, among others. 

During the halfway mark of the awards program, URC President and CEO Irwin Lee discussed the factors behind the company’s improvement over the last few years, starting with the strategy put forth in 2018-2019 for URC to become the suppliers’ partner of choice, re-evaluating the OGSM and the company’s Purpose, Values, and Ambitions in line with that of the Gokongwei Group, developing supplier resiliency in the midst of the Covid pandemic, the digitalization of manual processes, and embarking on the “Agile at Scale” program company-wide, among others.

“While the economy was crashing in 2020 and stagnant in 2021, we were able to hold our heads above water. All of the foundations we did, on the work on being a preferred partner, is now paying huge dividends because here now in 2022, we're growing 25%. That's above industry growth rates above even global, regional growth rates,” shared Lee.

Congratulating the winners, Lee said that these awards are also meant to encourage everyone to keep moving forward, especially as we continue to face headwinds from global supply chain issues and inflation. “There's still very many uncertainties and so in the middle of all this uncertainty, all we can do is to really build our muscles for agility. And that's why the Agile approach is very important. As we go forward, we have very specific growth ambitions, and we know that our growth ambitions cannot be achieved by ourselves. We will have to rely more and more – particularly going into the innovation space – on our suppliers. When we have a good supplier experience, our chances of partnering for solutions with our suppliers goes up, and that's what we need as we go forward.”

The Gawad Juan Awards also recognized the contribution of external suppliers to the conglomerate's success. Among them were representatives from BA Electrocare Corporation, CVC Precision Toolings, and Rentokil Initial (Philippines), who joined URC-AIG Procurement Group Head Romuel Tan and JG Summit Director for CSR and Sustainability Yvonne Purisima Flores onstage. 

Following the presentation of the major awards, Ariel Faraon, JG Summit Procurement Governance Manager, delivered the closing remarks. He started by sharing the relevance of the 2022 awards’ theme, #CODE, which stands for Collaboration, Ownership, Delivering Results, and Empowerment. “These four values have served as our guiding posts in making project decisions. These values served as the binding force that brought each member of our community to work together towards the achievement of our objectives and key results. I hope that these values will usher us as we enter into the more exciting fourth year of project implementation,” said Faraon, one of the main implementers of “Project Judith” in 2019, the initiative that led to the creation of the Gawad Juan recognition program.

Speaking about how employee and supplier recognition programs can help drive future success, he added, “The rituals we have set in motion, from celebrating small wins to big-ticket recognition ceremonies such as Gawad Juan, also became an integral part of it all. This provided the members of the entire SX group something to look forward to. Something that sends a message to us all that no good job will ever go unnoticed and that there is now a venue that aims to value all the contributions made by everyone.” 

Excelling in the areas of process efficiency, process effectiveness, service excellence, innovation, agility, and being a suppliers' partner of choice, URC's BCFG San Pedro 2 plant was selected as the Best Performing Squad. 

Our warmest congratulations to all the Gawad Juan Year 3 Awardees!

External Recognition (Supplier Awards)

Raw Materials Category

  • AD Gothong Manufacturing Corporation
  • Palvis Merchandising, Inc.
  • Tap Oil Manufacturing Corporation

Packaging Materials Category

  • SC Brothers Packaging Corporation
  • Quality Packaging Corporation

Maintenance, Repairs and Operating Supplies Category

  • Glenwood Technologies International, Inc.
  • Sanvil Industrial Supply
  • Wincorp Enterprises, Inc. 

Projects Category

  • Lincon Manufacturing Philippines, Inc
  • De Vera’s Engineering Enterprises
  • Florentino Roque Torres Construction and Maintenance Services

Services Category

  • BBA Electrocare Corporation
  • CVC Precision Toolings, Inc
  • Rentokil Initial (Philippines), Inc.

Third Party Service Providers Category

  • Synergy Experts Labor Service Cooperative
  • Ako Ikaw May-Ari ng Kooperatiba (AIMKO)
  • Strongarm Security Services, Inc.

Internal Partners Recognition

  • URC Treasury
  • BCFG Calamba 2 Squad
  • Foreign Payment Squad
  • Easy CMS Mo! Squad
  • Supply Chain Financing (SCF) Squad
  • Aspen Business Solutions, Inc.
  • Project Sync, JG Summit Olefins Corporation
  • URC Agro-Industrial Group Procurement Squad

Plant Service Heroes

  • BCFG Bagong Ilog - Jonathan Seeto
  • BCFG Bagumbayan - Benjamin Payumo
  • BCFG Binan - Frankie Gasolasco
  • BCFG Calamba 1 - Reylan Matanguihan
  • BCFG Calamba 2 - Alvina Abrenica
  • BCFG Canlubang - Bonifacio Sabado Jr.
  • BCFG Cavite - Marites Valdez-David
  • BCFG Cebu 1 - Jan Lou Veloso
  • BCFG Cebu 2 - Imelda Ranario
  • BCFG ESMO - Amy Lou Guillena-Jamero
  • BCFG Pampanga 1 - Edgardo Morgan Jr.
  • BCFG Pampanga 2 - Leo Guanzon
  • BCFG San Pablo - Mara Ederlinda Mituda
  • BCFG San Pedro 1 - Alvin Bermundo
  • BCFG San Pedro 2  - Aida Bocalig-Melor
  • NUR Cavite - Dexter Torralba
  • NUR Tarlac - Jan Henson Cortez

Procurement Service Heroes

  • BCFG - Norman Acebedo
  • UAIG - Gina Principe
  • SURE - Charlotte Amaquin
  • URFP - Anabelle Ballena

Payment Service Heroes

  • URC Treasury - Gernalyn Esta
  • URC Account Payables - Christine Doce

Group Awards

Best Logistics Team           

  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Biñan
  • 3rd Place      BCFG ESMO

Best Quality Assurance Team      

  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 3rd Place       BCFG San Pedro 1

Best Maintenance Team

  • 1st Place       BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 2nd Place      BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Cebu 2

Best Human Resources Team

  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pablo
  • 2nd Place      BCFG ESMO
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Biñan 

Best Production Team

  • 1st Place       BCFG Biñan
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 3rd Place       BCFG San Pablo

Major Awards

Process Efficiency  

  • 1st Place       BCFG Biñan
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 3rd Place       BCFG San Pablo

Process Effectiveness       

  • 1st Place       BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagumbayan
  • 3rd Place       BCFG San Pablo

Supplier's Partner-of-Choice        

  • 1st Place       BCFG Cebu 1
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Calamba 1
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Canlubang

Service Excellence 

  • 1st Place       BCFG Pampanga 2
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Pampanga 1
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Cebu 1


  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 3rd Place       NUR Cavite


  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 2nd Place      NUR Cavite
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Bagong Ilog

Most Improved Squad       

  • 1st Place       BCFG Cebu 1
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Cavite
  • 3rd Place       BCFG Calamba 2

Best Performing Squad

  • 1st Place       BCFG San Pedro 2
  • 2nd Place      BCFG Bagong Ilog
  • 3rd Place       NUR Cavite