The Problems with Some Filipino Entrepreneurs

The Problems with Some Filipino Entrepreneurs

By Apolinario Villalobos


First of all, many Filipino entrepreneurs are copycats. Their attitude is such that if they have observed the success of a certain business, they get envious and start their own, thinking that they would attain similar success. That is how the long line of bibingka stands along the highway of Digos in Davao came about, as well as roadside eateries all over the Philippines.

The copycat syndrome also brings about the proliferation of “fad businesses” that eventually, dies a natural death.


Many Filipino entrepreneurs forget one most important factor which is very necessary in putting up a business…the personal conviction or determination founded on personal interest. This factor is determined by the character of the person who is putting up a business. Simply put, an investor will definitely not succeed in selling a product that he does not use. How can a vegetarian for instance, be successful in selling meat products? How can a person sell herbal products if he does not even drink coffee?


Filipino entrepreneurs expect overnight success of their investment. They want an immediate return of their investment and lose heart in proceeding at the sign of any loss. They forgot that any investment that involves money is risky and may take years for the initial capital to be recovered. Meanwhile, recovery of investment may even be impossible if the Filipino entrepreneur spends not only the profit but the capital itself which should be used as a revolving fund.


Finally, one reason why many of these entrepreneurs always depend on the “5/6 loans” from enterprising Indian nationals, the so-called “Bombay” is their failure to save even a small portion of their profit that can be used as revolving fund later on. This attitude is an offshoot of the “Bahala na System”…a very negative aspect of the Filipino culture that seems so difficult to eliminate or at least, minimize.


If we want to move up, we should change our attitude!


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