Edwin Vincent V. Ortiz
ABLE SERVICES INC., LAMESA GRILL, MAKAN ASIAN SPICES, SUNBURST
“Do not allow your limitations to stop you from pursuing your dreams.”
I belong to a family of professionals, lawyers and educators. However, I was inspired to go into business by college friends whose families were into business and who always talked about going into the same field of endeavor. My stint as a salesman also exposed me to entrepreneurship.
I took up Business Management at the University of the Philippines Cebu. While studying, I was employed as a front desk staff member at the Cebu Plaza Hotel. I then worked as a salesman for Johnson Wax and was eventually promoted to sales supervisor. I also worked as Sales and Marketing Manager for other consumer companies.
My late brother lent me P260, 000 to start a business, on the condition that I would never give up even when it slowed down. With the capital, I was able to establish Able Services, a professional cleaning and manpower services company. I used the money to purchase industrial floor polishers and vacuum cleaners. During this time, professional cleaning was done with only brooms and dustpans as the main pieces of equipment.
The biggest challenge at the start was not being recognized. However, my hotel and sales experience helped me in acquiring customers; and Able Services was able to keep them by providing good service. I always kept my eyes open for opportunities. I did not let the lack of knowledge or experience stop me from accepting difficult cleaning jobs, but took them as occasions for learning.
Eventually, I branched out into cleaning chemicals and equipment distribution and private garbage collection, forming Cleaning Solutions and Cebu Solid Waste Management. I also diversified into the restaurant business thru Sunburst Fried Chicken, Lamesa Grill and Makan Asian Spices.
When I started out, I could not even afford to have a full tank of gasoline for my pick-up. But I had dreams in life, and I did not allow my limitations to stop me from pursuing my dreams. If I had “listened” to my limitations, I would not have realized my full potential. I used my GUTS (Genuine Urge to Succeed) to be where I am.
Now, my family and I enjoy a comfortable life. My cleaning services company has branches in Manila, Bacolod and Iloilo and I am planning to put up restaurant outlets outside Cebu in the very near future.