Many people lost their jobs during the pandemic, including land-based and sea-based overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). One of them is Victor dela Cruz, who used to be a chef on a cruise ship. He was one among the many OFWs sent home, especially since the tourism industry has taken a major hit.
Despite this predicament, Victor managed to turn things around, establishing a businesses using “ayuda” (financial aid). Let’s get to know more about him and how he was able to transition from an OFW into a successful businessman in the Philippines!
Jobless OFW Now Managing Successful Cassava Cake Business
After losing his job, Victor was worried about how he was going to earn enough income to support his family. One day, because of a cassava cake made by his mother, he and his family eventually thought about establishing a food business.
“Nagumpisa kami noong pandemic. Kasama ng anak ko at brother-in-law ko, mahilig kaming kumain ng meryenda, so ‘yung mother ko nagcome up ng cassava cake (We started during the pandemic. My child, brother-in-law, and I like to eat snacks, so my mother came up with cassava cake),” Victor shared during an interview with GMA’s Pera Paraan program.
He continued: “Nagustuhan ng mga relatives namin at nakatanggap kami ng feedback na ‘Bakit ‘di niyo gawing negosyo?’ (Our relatives liked the cassava cake, and we received the feedback, ‘Why don’t you turn this into a business?’)”
“Inisip namin saan kami kukuha ng pampuhunan. Yung natanggap namin na ayuda na PHP 8,000 pinagsama-sama namin para gamitin para magumpisa kami (We thought about where to get our capital. The PHP 8000 financial aid that we received, we put together to start a business),” Victor recalled.
And so, their family business, “Tito Billy’s Baked Cheesy Cassava ATBP,” was born. Pretty soon, however, Victor and his family realized that starting a cassava cake business wasn’t easy. They had to come up with something unique, something that would catch the attention of potential customers.
Hence, they decided to come up with different flavors of cassava cake. Currently, they offer the following cassava cake flavors: classic, cheesy, buko pandan, ube cheese, ube langka, ube macapuno, salted egg, mango cheesy, and roasted cashew. It all sounds really good!
In the beginning, Victor stated that they only had around three customers daily, and he was the one who delivered orders personally. Today, however, they already have a shop that sells more than 150 to 200 boxes of cassava cake per day!
Victor is truly proud to share that from a simple “ayuda,” he and his family were able to create a business that now earns PHP 40,000 to PHP 50,000 per week! “Yun ang pinakamagandang nangyari sa akin kasi hindi ko na kailangang mangibang bansa, magsakripisyo na lumayo sa pamilya (This is the greatest thing that’s happened to me, because I no longer need to go abroad, to sacrifice and be away from my family),” he said.
Check out this video about Victor and his family’s cassava cake business, as featured by the show “Pera Paraan” on GMA Public Affairs’ YouTube channel:
Meanwhile, for more information about the business, you can get in touch with “Tito Billy’s Baked Cheesy Cassava ATBP” through these contact details:
Address: 97 C. Raymundo Avenue, Pasig, Metro Manila
Mobile: 0945 776 8382
Google Map Location
The business is located in Pasig, Metro Manila. If ever you’re in the area, Here is the shop’s location on Google Maps, for your reference:
Without a doubt, the pandemic has affected many jobs and livelihood among us, but it certainly hasn’t hindered many Filipinos from putting their talents and creativity into work. Victor’s story is just one among many inspiring tales that have transpired during challenging times.
Speaking of success stories, here is another article that features OFWs who are proud to share the fruits of their labors. Do check it out!