Celebrities have the most fascinating, entertaining, inspiring and intriguing life stories on this planet. Before they became stars, Sarah Geronimo and Jason Dy had their fair share of ups and downs. But their struggles did not discourage them to relentlessly pursue their dream of making it big in the industry.
Jason worked as a professional haranista and demo artist before he was hailed the champion of The Voice of the Philippines Season 2.
Sarah’s life story is an open book. As a young girl, Sarah dreamt of showing her talents to the world and creating a better life for her family. Her music career took off after she won in Star for a Night in 2003. Today, she is a showbiz royalty and one of the most brilliant singers of this generation.
Sarah and Jason (who was mentored by Sarah in The Voice) stood on one stage during SEAOIL’sPartner’s Night. Just like them, SEAOIL’s tale of progress is a story of dreams, hard work and relentless pursuit for excellence. Founded in 1978, the SEAOIL Group of Companies was the brainchild of Francis and Josefina Yu, a hardworking middle-class couple who started their careers in the petroleum industry as gasoline station operators.
Today, SEAOIL is being managed by siblings Francis Glenn (chief executive officer), Lawrence Kristoffer (president for Lubricants and executive vice president), Mark (president for retail and chief finance officer) and Stephen (president for commercial sales and chief operations officer).
From humble beginnings, the company grew into one of the leading players in the country’s petroleum industry. When I was recently invited to host SEAOIL’s Partner’s Night, I had the chance to interview the Yu brothers. What occurred to me during my brief conversation with them was that theirs is a success story of harmony and continuity among the old and new generations running a family business.
It is an independent Filipino brand that successfully created its niche in a market that is dominated by big, international players and has emerged as the country’s leading and largest independent fuel company.
According to Lawrence, SEAOIL got its name from their mother Josie (Sea). He jested that he is as old as the company because he was born when his parents were building SEAOIL’s first facility in Mandaluyong.
For his part, Glenn believes that it is his parents’ “integrity and ability to identifying and taking advantage of opportunities” that exemplify SEAOIL’s strategic advantage until now. In 1997, SEAOIL became the first independent fuel company to open a gasoline service station following the oil industry’s deregulation.
Although the company had a smooth start, it also had its fair share of challenges like the Asian financial crisis and the 2008 oil crisis which SEAOIL successfully overcame. Mark shared that these challenges turned out to be blessings in disguise because they pushed them to work harder and become better in managing finances.
How did they decide who will lead which business line? “Family dynamics. Banking on each one’s expertise,” Stephen replied.
Through the years, SEAOIL has continued to improve and revolutionize its products to build a brand that customers will equate with premium quality. Products that not only improve its customers’ way of living, but also care for the world. With constant innovation, the company hopes to consistently provide products, services and systems that better serve its customers, employees and all other stakeholders.