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Meet Our Mentors: Daniel Perez, Co-Founder and Senior Vice President of Enderun Colleges


Tell us more about yourself.

I am a Filipino-Chinese born in Taipei, raised in the Philippines, and educated in Les Roches, Switzerland where I studied Business Management and majored in Hospitality Business with a specialization in Finance. As the co-founder and COO of Enderun Colleges, I am truly honored to have the privilege of mentoring a team of exceptional leaders and educators. I take great pride in playing an instrumental role in the shaping of young minds, as we work together to cultivate the next generation of great leaders and responsible citizens of the world. Being able to witness the growth and development of our students is one of the most rewarding experiences, and it brings me great joy to know that I am making a positive impact in their lives.


I love learning about new businesses and innovations in industries. I enjoy connecting and collaborating with people where I have the opportunity to learn about their culture and ideas. In addition, I have always had a passion for exploring different industries. This passion led me to start Alaundry Company Inc, an outsource laundry service provider for key hotels and hospitals in metro Manila. I would like to think that I have an eye for identifying market opportunities and capitalizing on solutions.

What made you want to become a mentor at Plug and Play?

I am deeply grateful for the guidance and mentorship I received early in my career. Having a good mentor has been a driving force behind my accomplishments, as they provided me with valuable insights, support, and encouragement throughout my entrepreneurial journey. I believe that mentors are incredibly important for anyone looking to succeed in their field, as they offer a wealth of knowledge, experience, and perspective that can be invaluable for personal and professional growth. This was why I was excited to take on the opportunity to be a mentor to someone else, as I understand the impact it can have on their growth.


Furthermore, I am thrilled to be a mentor at Plug and Play. I am impressed by the company's drive to help entrepreneurs and connect them with like-minded individuals through such programs. The support and resources that Plug and Play provide to startups are tremendous and I believe it plays a big role in their growth. As a mentor, I believe it will be a great opportunity for me to share my knowledge, give back to the community, learn, and connect with amazing entrepreneurs of various backgrounds and industries.


What are some of your highlights as a mentor for our Global Innovation Alliance program in Manila?

As a mentor in the Global Innovation Alliance program in Manila, I have had the valuable opportunity to connect, advise, and learn from fellow entrepreneurs. The mutual exchange of ideas, challenges, and solutions has led to interesting conversations and the development of new ideas and perspectives in our respective businesses. Through this mentorship, I was able to discover a new solution for Enderun Colleges' approach to student engagement through the innovative technology developed by my mentee.


Furthermore, I have had the pleasure of connecting my mentee to my extensive network of education business owners and educators/administrators, which has helped accelerate their expansion plans in Manila. Being a mentor in this program has been a highly rewarding experience, both for my mentee and myself.


How do you help founders embarking on their entrepreneurial journey?

As a mentor, I am committed to helping founders looking to expand their businesses in Manila by sharing my wealth of local and contextual knowledge, including market insights and cultural dynamics. I understand the importance of understanding the local market in order to succeed and I am eager to share my knowledge with mentees to help them navigate the nuances of the Philippines.


One of the key ways I help founders is by leveraging my network to connect them with key players in the market. I believe that building relationships is crucial to success in any market and I am always willing to introduce mentees to my network of contacts to help establish trust and accelerate acceptance. I also provide candid feedback on product gaps and recommend strategic approaches to raise interest in their products and services. I understand the importance of being objective and providing honest feedback that would help the mentee to improve their product and services to meet the demand of the market.


Furthermore, I help mentees to be prepared for challenges and learn to accept change. I understand that the market is dynamic and ever-changing, and being able to adapt and pivot is crucial to success. I strongly believe that accepting change and pivoting is not the same as giving up, it is a sign of resilience and adaptability, essential qualities for any entrepreneur looking to succeed in a dynamic market like Manila. With my guidance and support, I hope my mentee will be well-equipped to navigate the market better, establish trust, and ultimately succeed in Manila.


Why do you think the Manila market is ideal for startups looking to expand?

The city has a large and youthful population, which is a favorable demographic for many industries. Additionally, as the financial capabilities of the population improve, more consumers will have the means to purchase goods and services, further increasing the potential for businesses to succeed in the market.


Another advantage of doing business in Manila is its English-speaking environment. English is one of the official languages of the Philippines, and many of its citizens are fluent in the language. This makes it easier for businesses to communicate with potential customers and navigate the market.


What are the biggest challenges and most important lessons you learned in your career?

The pandemic has been the biggest challenge I have faced in my businesses. Learning to navigate the survival of my business during this period has been a lesson in itself. One of my key learnings is the value of moving quickly in decision-making. The rapidly changing landscape of the pandemic has required me to adapt on the fly, and being able to make decisions quickly has been crucial to staying afloat.


Another important lesson I have learned is the need to prepare for unexpected events, such as a pandemic. This means having a plan in place for how to optimize cash flow and keep my business agile, in order to be able to adapt to changing circumstances. This includes ensuring that my team can work remotely when possible, and being able to quickly close my physical workspace while continuing to generate revenue through other means. Overall, the pandemic has been a challenging time for my businesses, but it has also provided valuable lessons on the importance of being prepared and being able to adapt to changing circumstances.


What’s one piece of advice you would give to aspiring entrepreneurs?

Know yourself and build a strong team of people around you with talent and skill sets that complement you.


 

Written by: Daniel Perez

Daniel Perez is one of our Global Innovation Alliance Manila mentors. He is a Co-Founder and Senior Vice President of Enderun Colleges.


To find out more about our GIA Manila Program, click here.

Interested in being one of our mentors? Join our platform here!

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