BLOCK DOWN STORIES | Jake Villanueva, Head of Partnerships of Zybitech

COVID-19 makes universal digital access and cooperation essential. Technology is making history repeat itself. The ongoing crisis has not only impacted the tech industry, but several other industries are also witnessing a rise in pressure from all aspects of the value chain.

Do you agree that this crisis has revealed a general lack of connectivity and data exchange built into our global supply chains?

Indeed Blockchain is supporting efforts around the globe to battle the virus. We should look at this healthcare crisis as a learning curve that can show us how to build transparent and connective networks.

Have you enjoyed reading the last key leader’s story?

Let’s move forward with the next key leader that we’ve interviewed, Jake Vilanueva. He is the Head of Partnerships and External Affairs from Zybi Tech Inc. from Manila, Philippines.

Introduction about yourself and your company?

Jake Villanueva, Head of Partnerships and External Affairs from Zybi Tech Inc. Zybi Tech Inc is a FINTECH Company, doing business under the name and style of JUANCASH, is a BSP-licensed Remittance and Transfer Company with E-Money Issuer and Virtual Currency Exchange.

How are you and your business in this time of crisis?

We’re a FINTECH company, finance and technology is a critical aspect of the economy. Our main business caters to payments, remittance, peer to peer transfer, and buy load. In spite of the ECQ, our operations continue. We would like to say, our Business is as strong as ever. Although, employees are on a work from home basis for safety. As well as our CSRs, who are always ready to address every Juan’s needs.

What do you think will happen after all quarantine period will be lifted?

I see a rise in the usage of digital wallets and e-commerce platforms for interconnectivity and accessibility given the social distancing imposed in our country. As the COVID-19 scare decreases, we expect high demand for Businesses to adapt virtually. 

What are the things you’re doing this lock-down period?

We’re constantly looking for opportunities to better the lives of every Filipino in terms of JuanCash strategic partnerships and Zybi Tech. Our operations and all other departments are full force in delivering these services to every Juan.

What are some lessons you’ve learned during this pandemic?

Family, friends, and work have always been the normal concentration of every Juan. But this pandemic made me realize that health is mostly underrated so I have come to value and prioritize my health and should every Juan.

What are the things you’re grateful for?

I am extremely grateful for the teamwork we have at Zybi Tech. Even if we’re busy, we constantly check each other in our group chat and have daily virtual stand-ups. I am glad my Zybi Tech family, my circle of friends, and my immediate family are healthy. Praying and hoping that this pandemic will be all over soon.

Can you please share some stories of what you’re doing during quarantine?

Work-wise; the typical day would be work from home. I’d drink coffee, lots of phone calls and virtual meetings. Management meeting with strategy and execution. Since the ECQ, communication has been a challenge. We have to ensure that each department is very well synchronized. On a personal level, I attend to my family’s needs, buying my mom’s medicinal maintenance and grocery. And it’s summertime, it’s very hot in Manila. So I opted to shave my head down to the last inch (Hahaha) plus shower at least 2-3 times a day.  

Can you give some advice to other people and businesses out there during this pandemic?

It’s normal to be positive to reach your goals in business. However, businesses, in general, should employ the “worst scenario” mentality to protect the business and its employees. There are industries winning big time given this pandemic. But there are also industries losing big time. Employ a crisis management plan, adapt to the “new normal” as they call it, and follow through on your business continuity plan. We wouldn’t know when this pandemic will be over, again, we need to look at different angles and be prepared.

Do you agree that Blockchain can help sustain the economy?

Yes, especially in the e-commerce and fintech industry. I have been hearing business models in e-commerce, that’s going to be a game-changer in terms of financial technology and e-commerce. Imagine, digital stamp integrated with e-commerce and fintech.

Where can we follow you and your business?

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