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Australia Philippines Business Council hosts Cocktails & Conversations networking event in Melbourne

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Jason Cordi
Jason Cordi
Editor-in-Chief, The Philippine Times

The Australia Philippines Business Council (APBC) hosted Cocktails & Conversations in Melbourne on 31 March – its first face to face event this year. A group of APBC officials led by its President Rene Cabrera flew in from Sydney for the event. Mr. Cabrera is the Managing Director of San Miguel Yamamura Australasia (SMYA) Group, and he welcomed the wide range of guests, including Philippine Consul General to Melbourne Ma. Lourdes Salcedo, Deputy Consul Anthony Mandap, and executives from Victoria International Container Terminal, San Miguel Yamamura, Visy and a diverse mix of SMEs including law firms, resources consultancies, financial services, The Philippine Times, health and real estate. 

Presenting Woomera Wines at Sanector (formerly Portavin), launched on April 1 2022 with executives from San Miguel Yamamura.

The event was sponsored by San Miguel Yamamura, and showcased Woomera, the company’s line of wines developed for the Filipino palate, in a wine tasting feature led by Ian Matthews, wine specialist and Portavin Melbourne Managing Director.
There was an exclusive opportunity for the almost 30 in attendance to taste five different types of wine (White Moscato, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Merlot, Rose and Sweet Red Wine), which are already sold in the Philippines but not in Australia “so as not to compete with local clients,” according to Mr. Cabrera.

Ian Matthews of Portavin (now Sanector) presents Woomera Wines

As a non-profit private sector organisation, APBC is a strong advocate of fostering friendship and mutual benefit between the business communities of the Philippines and Australia. Since 1975, it has “dedicated its efforts and ensuring the support of, and engagement of its members on crucial issues and challenges,” according to its VP for Victoria Vick Pillay of Mind Tribes, innovators for inclusion.

FAFQ_25th_Anniversary
FAFQ_25th_Anniversary

Mr. Cabrera talked about the presence of SMYA in Oceania following the latest acquisition of Portavin for an “hugely large amount of money,” Mr. Cabrera said in a jest. Portavin is a company into wine-related services including bottling, packaging, quality assessment, warehousing and distribution.

“I’m confident that events like this will contribute to strengthening a mutually beneficial cooperation between the Philippines and Australia, particularly in improving trade and investment,” said Consul General Salcedo in her speech, after she shared some stories of the history of trade between the two countries – starting with the importation of sugar from Iloilo to Melbourne in the 1880’s.

San Miguel Yamamura

After starting with Cospak Pty Ltd over 10 years ago, SMYA is now a powerhouse of businesses that offer packaging solutions across more than 10 different industries. As a joint venture between two packaging leaders, San Miguel Corporation of the Philippines, and Nihon Yamamura Glass of Japan, SMYA is proudly an established leader in packaging and contract beverage filling in Australia and New Zealand. SMYA is headquartered in Sydney and is present in major states across Australia, New Zealand and China.

Jason Cordi
Jason Cordi
Editor-in-Chief, The Philippine Times

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