Lopez Group chairman emeritus Oscar M. Lopez (OML) says the ability to tilt the balance of good and evil one way or another makes for interesting times for the Group.
Speaking before top executives at the midyear performance review on August 5, OML said, “In my more than 80 years in this world, this seems to be the most interesting of times I have ever experienced. The Second World War and martial law were horrible times but not interesting the way today is…
“On the one hand, the economy is on a roll and it is all up to us and our political leadership to make sure we will gain enough speed for that much-awaited takeoff. On the other hand, we could experience another frustrating aborted takeoff, or worse, an actual crash because somehow we didn’t do what we were supposed to do to make it happen."
OML expressed confidence that the Lopez Group would be able to meet all the challenges related to ongoing expansion projects in the power, communications and property development sectors.
“What worries me is the threat of social instability arising from the widening gap between our social classes. We have not been able to do much about sharing the benefits of economic growth. Our economy is unable to create enough new jobs to mitigate the harshness of poverty in the lives of a majority of our people,” OML said.
He told executives to practice the Lopez Value of social justice and “fully integrate corporate social responsibility as a vital business strategy that is way more important than being seen as socially responsible through public relations and publicity.”
Meanwhile, ABS-CBN Corporation chairman Eugenio Lopez III (EL3), vice chairman of the Lopez Group, echoed the sentiment of living in “interesting times” going forward, citing the heavy capital requirements for the Group’s expansion projects.
“The numbers we are looking at are quite daunting, but the projects are definitely doable. If we succeed on the energy and on the media fronts, then we would be able to say that we are over the hump. What is certain is that we will grow in a very different fashion, and all these plans will come to fruition in the next five years,” EL3 said.
He reminded top executives that the Lopez Group is unique in terms of the challenges it faces because of the legacy of its founding family, “which tells us clearly what we can and cannot do.” He expressed hope that the Group’s leaders are not frustrated by the burden of such a legacy, that is, upholding the Lopez Values consistently.
“Stick around for the next five years. It will be fun, entertaining, and you will have plenty of stories to tell your grandchildren,” EL3 said. (By Carla Paras-Sison)