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Laong nila an taga Tago kuno para-away pero hanugay. Mamingawuni naman ganahani mandahap-dahap nan notisya. Naman ini na pabyon inhimo para kita na mga Tagon-on magkasinusihay, magka-binayluay nan mga gilaong, nan notisya, nan kaayuhan.
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Unread postPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:24 pm 
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(Note: Mr. Eugene Acevedo, the Chief Executive Officer of Philippine National Bank, is the son of Atty. Benjamin M. Acevedo of Tago. Below is the article that came out in the Sunday issue (1 August 2010) of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. [My thanks to Ramil Patrimonio for the shout-out.] Here goes the full article.)


A PHYSICIST FOR A CEO
By Doris Dumlao
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 16:21:00 07/31/2010



THERE WAS once a simple bright boy from Surigao del Sur who aspired to become an officer at the big pulp and paper factory in his hometown. But there was a much bigger world waiting for him when he grew up especially as he turned out to be a treasury whiz.

For the last 23 years, he rose from the ranks of Citibank to run its dealing room in the Philippines and eventually took over regional treasury operations in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau.

Now Eugene Acevedo is back in the country and is one of the most closely watched chief executive officers in the banking arena as soon as he joined Philippine National Bank, which has also become more exciting to monitor in the stock market recently.

But the fact that Acevedo had given up a thriving overseas career at a global financial giant to be the new captain of the ship may be the strongest argument why PNB will more likely be a predator than a prey in the local merger and acquisition arena in the years ahead.

Restoring PNB

His vision of restoring PNB to its former glory isn’t seen by his peers and rivals as a mission impossible, especially for someone who has had a track record of outperforming his own goals.

Running a local commercial bank is something that Acevedo had wanted to do for a long time and when the opportunity presented itself – and especially because it’s PNB, he points out – it was something that he couldn’t refuse.

“Imagine the weight of the tradition, the legacy,” Acevedo tells the Philippine Daily Inquirer in an interview in his vast office at the PNB complex.

“PNB was the first bank to be established to serve Filipinos specifically… It was the de facto central bank for a long time. To me, it was an overwhelmingly inspiring choice,” Acevedo says.

Long before joining the bank, Avecedo has always felt that PNB, then a government financial institution, is very much a part of him and his family.

When he was born, both his parents were civil servants – his dad a lawyer working for the provincial government and his mom a school teacher – who both collected their salaries from PNB. As a college student in the University of San Carlos where he was a scholar, it was likewise PNB that disbursed his allowance.

First job

When he briefly joined the University of the Philippines faculty as his first job, his payroll was in PNB. And when he joined Citibank later, he was at one time head of equity operations coinciding during the period when Citibank acted as the lead bank for the first tranche of PNB privatization.

Needless to say, his was a personal and professional bond with this local bank.

“Basically my heart told me to go to PNB.”

Physicist turned treasurer

Acevedo majored in Physics at the University of San Carlos in Cebu, with the original intention of proceeding to either Medicine or Law school but ended up enjoying Physics. Though he always excelled in his academics, he was even more active in extracurricular activities, which however didn’t prevent him from graduating with honors. He ran a campus political party and a small newsletter and yes, joined the anti-government protests, although not for a prolonged time.

After getting his Physics degree, Acevedo still didn’t know what to do with his life. He went to UP Diliman to pursue a masters degree. That was when he landed his first job: teaching Physics in UP Diliman, a stint that lasted for one semester and one summer. “Ironically, it was doing my time in Diliman when I was convinced that I was better off taking my MBA.”

Thus, Acevedo was off to the Asian Institute of Management. He remembers it was one of those “hungry” afternoons that he chanced upon a Citibank recruitment talk led by banker-economist Victor Valdepenas (now CEO of Union Bank of the Philippines). It was that critical period of 1986 and very few banks were offering jobs so Citibank had a vast pool of cerebral youngsters to choose from.

Since getting into that Citibank program, Acevedo has made waves in this institution for the last 23 years and established a career that will make his compatriots very proud of.

Bigger jobs

Responsibilities became bigger and bigger and there was no slowing down. His first assignment was treasury operation and spent the first two years doing a lot of things, including consolidating the equity subsidiary into Citibank. Afterwards, he was summoned into the dealing room to be a trader and in 1993, became part of an audit exchange team that audited cash and trade products and was afterwards transferred to bond trading. He was part of the team that nurtured the derivatives book but this didn’t last long as he was moved to Hong Kong as part of the derivatives marketing team, the first for Citibank in the region.

This post in Hong Kong lasted for a year but because he was starting up a family then, he requested to do his work out of Manila.

Soon after the Asian crisis of 1997, Acevedo became head of treasury marketing. In 2001, he accepted an offer to move to Singapore to be the regional sales head for Asia.

“That was my first big job,” he says, and this he did for three years. “It was incredibly satisfying in many ways. But I remember that my dream job then was to run the Philippine dealing room. In fact, that was one of the main reasons why I joined Citi. I was enamored with the idea of running the dealing room at some point in the future so I begged my seniors to allow me to move to the Philippines,” he recalls.

He became the country treasurer but after a year, he couldn’t say no to an offer to run the Hong Kong dealing room. During his stay in the former British colony, his responsibilities were expanded to cover Taiwan and Macau. “While I was doing all these things they also made me chair of the recruitment committee. I would go around recruiting young people and organizing training programs for the young with high potentials.”

Recruiting

When recruiting young people, he was always on the lookout for fellow Physics majors to hire. But of course he didn’t mind those who majored in MBBs (Molecular Biology) or Biomedical Engineering, for instance.

So how did being a Physicist help him in this highly technical business that leaves very little room for error? “Quantitative skills or the ability to smell a misprice is not unique to Physics majors. Engineers do that. Math majors do that. It helps sort of – at least when people find out you’re a Physics major they find out you’re not bobo [stupid]. My wife keeps on telling me I got more benefits from being a Physics major not from what I learned in school but the kind of impression that I make on people when they find out about my background. It makes for good conversation.”

He is thus proud of his Citibanker DNA. And what exactly is such? “Apart from the culture of service excellence, I think what sets Citibank apart from other foreign banks is the tradition of mentorship. When you join, somebody watches out for you and gives you guidance, helps you build your network, is present for advice and that has no conflict of interest because the mentor shouldn’t be your boss. Basically, wherever you go, there are people older than you who make sure they teach you, make sure you don’t get into trouble and set you out for success. It’s the instinctive teaching. When you see the value in this tradition, you do the same when the time comes for you,” Acevedo says.

Reclaiming PNB’s Old Glory

As such, he says Citibankers like going to reunions – to people who mentored them and those whom they mentored. And as everyone knows by now, the host of the next big one, slated for early next year, will be PNB.

As the CEO of what was once the country’s leading bank, Acevedo aims to lead the financial institution back to its former glory and reclaim a spot among the top three local banks across all product lines. He says bank could be among the top three in at least three areas in two years – remittances, credit cards and treasury sales. As PNB is celebrating its centennial anniversary in six years, his dream is for PNB to get back to a key leadership position in the industry. He’s cognizant of the expectations and the much closer look taken by the market on PNB these days. “Even if I don’t open my mouth, they know what I would do based on my background and what makes sense.”

The treasury business, is already a big contributor to PNB’s earnings but Acevedo wants a balanced treasury that’s almost 50-50 percent risk taking and sales as opposed to the current model that focuses less on sales but more on trading and liquidity management. The bank has been aggressively poaching people from other banks, including a new treasurer Horacio “Ricky” Cebrero III. So for equity analysts who knew these things, they didn’t buy false rumors that PNB is on the auction block.


Once merged with Allied Bank which is also controlled by PNB’s principal stockholder, tycoon Lucio Tan, PNB will already become the fourth largest bank in terms of asset base.

The two banks have had sufficient practice in functional merging over the last two years and after the final merger approval, which is likely to happen within this year, Acevedo said, it would be easier to start the actual consolidation of balance sheets by January 2011.

Improving cost efficiency

Acevedo is planning to deploy PNB’s vast distribution channel across the country as well as overseas to cross-sell products such as bancassurance and credit cards to its over two million customer base. Likewise maximizing PNB’s vast overseas footprint – the largest among Philippine banks – he has no doubt that the institution could soon reclaim the number one position as remittance channel, especially with a recent partnership with Western Union which is seen very useful in areas where it has no brick-and-mortar presence.

To improve cost efficiency, Acevedo also wants to sell off as much foreclosed assets as it can. “It’s like us running a marathon and carrying a big backpack. We’ll try to shed as much as we can so we can run faster.”

PNB will likely be busy working to optimize the merger in the next year or two but isn’t closing its doors to other opportunities. Acevedo points out that the bank’s principal stockholder Lucio Tan, as indicated by the recent alliance in the tobacco business built with its main competitor, is very open to many ideas.

“Even those ideas which you think we won’t do, PNB can do,” he says.


*********
the link's here: http://business.inquirer.net/money/tops ... -for-a-CEO

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"Most claims of originality are testimony to ignorance and most claims of magic are testimony to hubris." -James March-


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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:39 am 
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kspy, kon sa cebuano pa na pulong, "ngilngig". ngilngig gayud an mga tagon-on. mopatay gayud. i would again be reminded of my persistent request for you (dat was long time ago) to produce a coffee table book featuring successful tagon-ons in their various fields. am very proud of him. but am also anxious. why? the majority owner of PNB is Lucio Tan.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:02 am 
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edpels,

ngilngig? daan sa. one year ahead iton si eugene sa ato. iton siyan valedictorian na jessie pagaran sa john bosco kay minbalhin sa si jessie sa mangagoy. pag umangkon iton ni manong lalo acevedo kay bro sa ni manong lalo an kan "yoyoy" papa. an iya mama taga cantilan, paryente pa na lalay laurente.

coffee table book? wish ko lang. hain kaha kita manhanap nan budget nan iton? pero inkalang-an ko na daan si dr. ted seclon nan ini na project. suguti siya mag kodaker nan way bayad. actually di sa kadayaw haw lisud ini na project, magastos lang, labi na na dili gayud ako musugot na dihaw topnotch an quality nan printing.

sige lang, ibutang ta lang siya sa list of things to do after retirement. :-D

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Unread postPosted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:19 pm 
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Kamps & Edpels,

Ngilngig gayod agaw. Kadayaw na noticia. Story of this sort makes me prouder to be a Tagon-on.

Yoyoy veered away from being a Physicist to become a finance mogul. His intelligence is a God given gift. He was born to lead.


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