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McDonald’s to open fewer new stores than planned thanks to COVID-19

Fast food company McDonald’s Philippines is aiming to open 15 more stores in the country this year as expansion was hampered by the ongoing...

Entertainment guilds complain about new FDCP filming guidelines

THE Inter-Guild Alliance, a group representing the various entertainment guilds in the country, has denounced the newest guidelines for production released by the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP), calling out the council for “making moves detrimental to the industry’s welfare,” according to a statement posted online.

Lenovo sees surge in sales during lockdown

LENOVO Philippines reported a surge in sales for its devices after lockdown measures were put in place in Metro Manila and other locations in the country.

From Anton Dvorak to Gary Valenciano: PPO to hold online ‘pocket...

WHEN you cannot go out of your house to attend a concert, the concert’s performers will come to your home. Virtually.

L’Oreal goes green

FRENCH personal care company L’Oreal has announced its sustainability initiatives which include using only renewable energy in 2020 or only using recycled or bio-based packaging by 2030.

Helping parents teach kids financial literacy online

INSURANCE company Pru Life UK aims to encourage parents to teach their children about financial literacy at home as it made teaching materials for its program, Cha-Ching Kid$ At Home available online.

YouTube, Smart workshops for YouTube creators shift online

ONLINE video-sharing platform YouTube and Philippine telecommunications company Smart Communications have teamed up to launch Creator Camp Live, a series of online events and workshops to teach YouTube creators (aspiring or otherwise) on how to “pivot and be effective in the time disrupted by the pandemic,” according to a release.

Pandemic spurs new directory services for small restaurants

WHEN the pandemic hit and lockdown restrictions stopped people from going out to dine, restaurants had no choice but to offer delivery and takeout services to survive and that was the kind of ecosystem where services like GrabFood, Food Panda, and Lala Food thrived.

Lenovo extends premium warranty service

LENOVO has extended its premium warranty service from two years to three years on select devices from its IdeaCentre, Yoga, ThinkPad and Legion lines “to better support their customers during the COVID-19 pandemic” bought from July 1 onwards, according to a company release.

RWM complex getting ready to open with ‘smart disinfection’ and ‘anti-virus...

INTEGRATED casino-resort Resorts World Manila (RWM) has applied stringent measures to ensure the health and safety of its guests and employees as the 3,600-room complex and its facilities prepare to reopen in the new normal.

Twenty-Nine Eleven tackles 6Cyclemind’s ‘I’ on cover project

FILIPINO indie pop rock band Twenty-Nine Eleven has released its version of 6Cyclemind’s “I” as part of 6Cyclemind’s ongoing Sige I-Cover Mo Lang project.

Thailand ready to throw open its doors

THAILAND has been widely hailed as a COVID-19 success story as the country managed to stop the spread of the virus in its early days through rigorous contact tracing using a “thousand epidemiological teams” across the country. Now, the country is poised to re-open for tourists, with a focus on domestic tourism, as the government tries to revive a major contributor to the Thai economy hit by the pandemic.

Netflix survey reveals 87% of Filipinos watched shows with LGBTQIA+ themes,...

STREAMING service Netflix is celebrating Pride Month this June with a selection of inclusive shows that “tell diverse, inclusive, and authentic stories of the LGBTQIA+ community,” and releasing a Philippine survey and video on the importance of inclusivity and representation among its viewers.

Parokya ni Edgar to take requests during online concert

FILIPINO band Parokya ni Edgar will be holding an online concert on June 19, via Tanduay Rhum’s official Facebook page, at 8 p.m.

Robinsons shops for you in the ‘new normal’

METRO MANILA is currently in a looser form of lockdown where people are allowed to go out to buy essentials, to work, and live life in the “new normal,” but understandably, many still prefer to stay at home and have as little contact with other people as possible because of the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic.

Unsafe at home during the lockdown

WHILE the recent lockdown restrictions were necessary to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country and were meant to keep people safe within their homes, many people found themselves unsafe as they were locked in with their abusers with little recourse.

Amid the pandemic, Kiehl’s does good online

AMERICAN skincare brand Kiehl’s announced that despite strict lockdown restrictions due to the pandemic, the company has grown its sales on the back of its online platform on Facebook, a local executive said.

What did Filipinos watch during the lockdown? Lots of K-drama, local...

SEVERAL months have been spent inside our homes as lockdown measures try to slow down the spread of the pandemic which has sickened tens of thousands in the Philippines and millions around the world. Since Filipinos could not go outside, they turned to watching a lot of Korean dramas and local movies to entertain themselves, according to a study done by an e-commerce aggregator.

Comedian Jo Koy tours Manila in latest Netflix special

IN his newest Netflix special, comedian Joseph Glenn Herbert, better known as “Jo Koy,” continues to marvel at his Filipino roots while touring his Filipino-American friends around a city he used to live in.

Actress Anita Linda, 95

Anita Linda, considered by many to be the country’s oldest active actor, died at the age of 95 early Wednesday morning.

Learning from the founders

TIMES are hard — the pandemic is not yet over, the entire world has been upended and has entered what the World Bank called the worst recession since the Second World War as it forecast the global economy to shrink by 5.2% this year — but there is still hope for recovery. The recently launched book Asian Founders at Work seeks to encourage recovery through stories of Asian businesses that weathered storms and found success in their industries.

Ben&Ben makes a lockdown song

A SAD story of loss posted on one of Ben&Ben’s music videos on YouTube inspired the indie folk-pop band to create a new single while under quarantine.

New GMA online show focuses on life hacks, DIY

LOCKDOWN restrictions have eased but many people still prefer to stay inside their homes for fear of the pandemic — and for those who want to make their time in quarantine as productive as possible, GMA Network Artist Center has an online show just for that.

A casualty of COVID-19: Fun Ranch is closing the barn doors

CHILDREN’S playground and party place Fun Ranch is closing its doors due to the pandemic as its management felt it would be “too long a wait before the situation becomes ideal for children to play freely and have parties again,” the company told BusinessWorld.

Milk tea pearls and yoga mats, fruits and meat: what people...

Over the last two and a half months when Metro Manila and many parts of the country were under varying degrees of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, e-commerce site Lazada noted that many people used their time to learn a new skill — including making their own milk teas at home — as their customers bought quite a few interesting things while on lockdown.

Hyun Bin crash lands into Smart

WHEN word that South Korean actor Hyun Bin was going to be the face of Smart Communications and clothing brand Bench dropped last week, Filipinos on social media lost their minds. And now that the Smart campaign has officially been launched, it became apparent that not even a pandemic can stop the Crash Landing on You star from gracing our screens (though he can’t be here physically because of travel restrictions).

Globe partners with Korean streaming service

PHILIPPINE telecommunications company Globe has expanded its roster of video streaming site partners with the entry of VLive, a South Korean live video streaming and entertainment platform service.

Bayanihan Musikahan says goodbye, having raised over P122 million

AFTER two and a half months of nightly online concerts to raise funds for poor communities affected by the lockdown, Bayanihan Musikahan says goodbye after raising more than P122 million for its beneficiaries.

Company focuses on plants for health

SEKAYA, a brand that focuses on plant-based products, has added to its product lines, expanding its reach towards skincare, food supplements, and powdered vegetables for shakes and smoothies.

Agoda hopeful domestic tourism will recover soon

THE ongoing pandemic has brought the tourism industry to its knees, with multiple countries imposing travel restrictions, halting flights, and closing accommodations to stem the tide of COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) infections. But online booking platform Agoda is hopeful, banking on domestic tourism to pick up and recover long before international travel does.

Instituto Cervantes screens anti-death penalty film online this weekend

INSTITUTO CERVANTES de Manila will be screening online for free the Spanish classic film El Verdugo (The Executioner), Luis Garcia Berlanga’s 1963 black comedy about the death penalty, on May 30 and 31.

Jo Koy mixes travel, food, and culture in new Netflix special

FILIPINO-AMERICAN stand-up comic Joseph Glenn Herbert — better known as “Jo Koy” — has his third Netflix special coming up. But this time, instead of a pure stand-up show, he is mixing a bit of food and culture as he travels through the streets of the Philippines to “see where it all started,” as he says in the trailer.

New show focuses on home cooks

LIFESTYLE and entertainment channel Metro has come up with a new cooking show, Potluck, that focuses on the talent of home cooks and their favorite recipes. The channel currently is looking for home cooks who are interested in being featured.

Podium’s restaurants are ready for business

MOVEMENT restrictions in Metro Manila may be loosening but as the pandemic continues, it will still be quite some time before dining in restaurants will be allowed again because of the threat of infection. But that doesn’t mean cravings can’t be satisfied as many restaurants are offering delivery and pick-up services for their specialties. The Podium Mall in Mandaluyong City has launched its own to-go delivery service for some of its restaurants so customers can still order their favorite dishes.

Adapting to the pandemic: LSGH goes online, accepts girls

EVERY organization has had to adjust to the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic, including La Salle Greenhills (LSGH). Not only is it getting ready for a new school year by figuring out how to offer a blend of online and physical classes, the pandemic has served as the impetus for the all-boy’s school to finally open its doors to girls — albeit in a limited manner.

Five Filipino movies coming to Netflix

NETFLIX has announced that five Filipino movies will be available on the streaming service in June. The titles come from a “wide variety of genres from horror, comedy, to drama,” according to its regional acquisitions executive.

Asian artists gather for livestream concert benefiting UNICEF

Kuala Lumpur-based digital entertainment company WebTVAsia and YouTube will be holding a four-hour livestream concert on May 27 titled ONE LOVE ASIA featuring top artists from the region for the benefit of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Asia to help its “efforts in preventing the pandemic from becoming a lasting crisis for vulnerable children,” a statement read.

Marathon online concert series raises P80 million

THE marathon concert series Bayanihan Musikahan has raised more than P80 million in donations to benefit various organizations and communities after two and a half months of nightly online concerts.

Personal SM shoppers and more on MyKuya

ON-DEMAND service app MyKuya announces that its users can now use the app to shop in SM Supermalls as quarantine measures “inspired [the company] to continue expanding its horizons for the comfort of the Filipino people,” a statement read.

Around the world in seven years… and counting

WHEN Danish traveler Torbjorn “Thor” Pedersen set out to travel the world and visit more than 200 countries getting on any airplanes in 2013, he never thought he’d be on the last leg of his journey and stranded in Hong Kong while a pandemic raged worldwide.

Shirt brand reminds people to breathe with short film

IN a world full of fear and uncertainties, shirt company Linya-Linya reminds people to take a moment to breathe in its new short film Kalmahan Mo Lang.

Flying in a pandemic: How Cebu Pacific copes

THE pandemic has effectively shuttered the airline industry. In the Philippines alone, the lockdowns have caused airlines to lose P7 billion monthly according to the Air Carriers Association of the Philippines, Inc. (ACAP), prompting them to seek almost P9 billion in monthly aid from the government.

FDCP launches surveys to see effect of COVID-19 on audio-visual industry

THE Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) is asking audio-visual workers, their companies, and distribution companies to answer several online surveys for the council to be able to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine measures on the audio-visual (AV) industry.

Spotify’s microsite offers musical connections

LIKE almost everything these days, how and where people listen to music has also been affected by the pandemic and the various quarantine or lockdown procedures. Music streaming service Spotify noted in a late-March blog post that people are now listening to more “chill” music — more acoustic fare than dance music. And thanks to social distancing, The Police’s “Don’t Stand So Close To Me” (1980) also saw a 135% spike in people searching and listening to it.

How to still be a great place to work in a...

IN its inaugural run, Great Place to Work Philippines awarded five companies that exemplified how to keep a company running efficiently and employees happy. And while the surveys conducted to choose the winners were done before the COVID-19 pandemic raged, the California-based consulting firm behind the award noted that the same companies named “Best Workplaces” nonetheless found ways to keep both employee morale and productivity high.