George Yang

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George T. Yang (born September 12, 1939) is a successful Chinese Filipino businessman and founder of Golden Arches Development Corporation (GADC) or McDonald’s Philippines. As of 2010, Yang remains to be active in all his business endeavors and currently is the Chairman of GADC. Yang is also Consul ad Honorem, State of Eritrea and holds chairmanships and directorships in several other companies. Yang graduated from the De La Salle University Manila, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. He further obtained a Masters Degree in Business Administration at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, USA. Over the years, Yang has been a recipient of various awards and recognitions given by different private and civic organizations: - Awardee for the 6th Jose Rizal Awards for Excellence in the field of Business and Entrepreneurship in 2008 - De La Salle Alumni Association Lasallian Achievement Awardee in 2007 - Philippine Franchise Association Lifetime Achievement Awardee in 2006 - Distinguished Professional Chair in Business Management, San Beda College in 2005 - Most Distinguished Bedan Award in 2004 - Bedan of the Century Awardee in 2001 - Outstanding Manilan in 1989 - Kaunlaran Award as Outstanding Business Executive in 1982 - Manila Jaycees Awardee for his contribution to “Adapt an Orphan” project McDonald’s Philippines


Early Years

George T. Yang built the first Golden Arches in the Philippines in 1981 along the busy streets of Morayta, Manila. The following year, McDonald’s opened its first Drive Thru restaurant in Greenhills, introducing Filipinos to a more convenient way of getting great tasting food at affordable prices. After its success in Metro Manila and Luzon, McDonald’s entered Visayas and Mindanao in 1992 by establishing stores in Cebu and Cagayan De Oro respectively. In 1996, the Ronald McDonald House Charities was launched in the country. McDonald’s Philippines won the McDonald’s International Award for Excellence in value and profitability for the very first time in 1996, and won it again the following year in 1997.

Filipino Flavor

As McDonald’s in the Philippines started to grow, Yang saw the need for the brand to introduce products that would adapt a more Filipino flavor. He fervently lobbied with McDonald’s Corporation to be allowed to offer local products that cater to the unique Filipino palette. The Philippines is in fact the only country in the world to serve McSpaghetti. As a result of Yang’s efforts, local food products like Chicken McDo, Burger McDo, McSpaghetti and Longganisa with Rice (popular breakfast meal) were introduced and have truly become customer favorites.

Products and Services

McDonald’s is a customer-oriented company that strives to offer Filipinos a combination of great tasting, quality food products at affordable prices with excellent service. McDonald’s ensures the highest standards of quality and cleanliness in all aspects of its operations, providing only the best tasting meals in every restaurant at any time.

Well loved McDonald’s products like the Big Mac, Cheeseburger, World Famous French Fries, Egg McMuffin, Apple Pie, Sundae and the Happy Meal, plus local favorites like Chicken McDo, Burger McDo and McSpaghetti remain to be popular choices among Filipinos.

More than just food products, McDonald’s over the years has pioneered various innovative services for utmost customer convenience. In 2004, McDonald’s was the first fast food chain in the country to pioneer Open 24 Hour restaurants. In 2005, McDonald’s extended its 24 hour service by launching the 24/7 McDelivery. 2005 also marked the launch of McDonald’s Dessert Centers. Last 2009, McDonald’s yet again introduced another innovation to its delivery service, the web-based access to McDelivery with www.mcdelivery.com.ph. This 2010, McDonald’s pioneered the no minimum food purchase delivery requirement with a fixed delivery charge of only P40.00.

To date, McDonald’s has nearly 100 Drive-Thru stores, 157 delivery hubs, and close to 150 24/7 stores and 96 Dessert Centers all over the country.

McDonald’s in the Philippines Today

Today, McDonald’s Philippines remains to be a 100% Filipino-owned company. From its first restaurant in 1981, McDonald’s has grown to become one of the leading fast food chains in the country with 300 restaurants nationwide. McDonald’s now is a multi-billion peso company that continues to expand and serve Filipinos all over the country with great tasting food at affordable prices. Yang has turned over leadership of McDonald’s Philippines to his son, Kenneth, but is still involved in its operations and its charity of choice, Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Contents

Music Man

Passion for singing

Aside from being a successful business and family man, music has always had a special place in the heart of Yang. Although starting out as just a hobby for him, his undeniable potential both as a singer and performer shone through. It was his close friend, singer and songwriter Jose Marie Chan, who convinced him to share his talent and record some of his favorite songs. Being the natural tenor that he is, he took a step towards classical music and took formal lessons under the instruction and tutelage of well-known soprano Rachelle Gerodias. Yang now holds a string of successful albums, concerts and performances and continues to grow as one of the country’s promising tenors.

Concerts and Performances

Yang had his first solo concert entitled ‘Sterling Night of Music’ in 2006 for the benefit of the RMHC, with McDonald’s endorser Sharon Cuneta and Regal Matriarch Lily Monteverde as his special guests. In 2007, he sang the Supreme Court Chief Justice cameo role as a tenor in the musical play ‘Something to Crow About’ in New York, L.A. and San Francisco. His outstanding performance earned him a nomination in the 2007 Aliw Awards. Yang did his 1st Major Concert entitled ‘Yang Klassics Concert’ in 2009 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. He shared the limelight with his mentor Rachelle Gerodias, international pianist Raul Sunico, his granddaughter Krystel Ashley Yang, singer Kuh Ledesma, and the scholars of the Klassic Music Foundation.

In 2010, Yang performed in a special benefit concert for RMHC entitled Musika! Musika!. It featured the music of the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra Rhythm Ensemble and the Klassical Music Foundation Scholars, with special performances by balladeer Jose Mari Chan, TV and stage actress Pinky Marquez, and soprano Rachelle Gerodias. • Albums - Always Yang: Timeless Songs by George Yang (released commercially, November 2008) - Yang At Heart (private release) - Forever Young (private release) - The Night is Yang (private release)

Advocacies

Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC)

The Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is McDonald’s charity choice and is a 35-year old global initiative that aims to nurture the lives of children. In 1996, RMHC began its operations in the Philippines by focusing on addressing the need of Filipino children for proper education through reading. RMHC currently has two flagship programs which focus on different but equally essential aspects of a child’s development: Bright Minds Read (BMR) and Bahay Bulilit. Bright Minds Read is a partnership between the Department of Education and RMHC. It aims to bring a beginning readers’ toolkit to public school children and their teachers in order to enrich and facilitate the reading and language skills of students. T Bahay Bulilit is another major initiative of RMHC in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and local government units to build day care centers in communities where they are most needed. Inside each Bahay Bulilit day care center, children aged 2-5 years old are taught basic skills in preparation for formal schooling as well as proper social interaction skills and positive values. Other initiatives of RMHC also include: “Your Change can Change Lives” campaign and “Bigay Tulong”. The “Your Change can Change Lives” campaign is an initiative wherein anyone can help by donating their change in the canisters found beside the counters of all McDonald’s stores; and fundraising events like the annual charity golf and badminton tournaments. “Bigay Tulong” on the other hand was launched in 2007 with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and key media partners to make McDonald’s stores serve as a venue for accepting public donations of goods and cash for natural calamity victims. For almost 15 years, RMHC has raised 30 million pesos, helping more than 2 million children all over the country.

Klassikal Musik Foundation

Driven by his noble vision and passion for classical music, George T. Yang founded the Klassikal Music Foundation (KMF), an organization geared towards promoting, fostering, and encouraging appreciation of classical music. Founded in 2008, KMF is an artistic scholarship program that provides financial assistance to deserving musicians in their quest to hone their talent in classical music. It assists promising, gifted and qualified artists and students of the performing arts by providing financial support for their study and for their attendance at conferences and programs, within the Philippines or in foreign countries. At present, the foundation has 2 batches with 13 scholars from different universities and it will endeavor to add more scholars every year.

To help in achieving the foundation's thrusts are some of the most prominent luminaries in music & arts, which include: Raul Sunico, Lily Monteverde, Rosalinda Orosa and Shirley Bangayan.

Professional designations

Yang is currently the Vice Chairman of the publicly-listed conglomerate and the mother company of Golden Arches Development Corporation, Alliance Global Group, Inc.. He previously served as its Chairman of the Board from October 1999 to September 2006, before he relinquished the position to Andrew Tan. He is also the Chairman of the of the Caticlan International Airport and Development Corporation (CIADC).

Aside from being the President of GADC, he also serves the same position for First Georgetown Ventures Inc., Fun Characters Inc., Fun Characters International Pte. Ltd., Kristin Management & Development Corporation.

He also chairs the Trojan Computer Forms, Inc., Yorkshire Holdings Inc., MC Home Builder's Depot, Construction Strategies and Management Corporation, GEC Land Development Corporation, First Georgetown Ventures Inc., Fun Characters Inc., Fun Characters International Pte. Ltd., Kristin Management and Development Corporation.

Yang has also been the Vice Chairman of the AGI subsidiary and real estate developer, Megaworld Corporation.

He serves as Director for Development Bank of Singapore, Prime Gaming Corporation Philippines, Inc. , and an Independent Director of Berjaya Philippines, Inc. And was a member of the Board of Directors of Megaworld subsidiary, Empire East Land Holdings, Inc. until April 1998.

He also has business interest in Fairways and Blue Water golf resort and the Balaihara Newcoast Villatel.

He also sits as one of the Board of Governors of the Philippine National Red Cross and The Tower Club.

Other business development

In 2009, Yang’ss CIADC entered executed an build-rehabilitate-operate-transfer agreement with the Philippine government after it won the rights for a 25-year contract to develop and operate the Godofredo P. Ramos Airport in Caticlan, Aklan but was givne only seven years to build and expand the airport, which as the gateway to the popular tourist destination, Boracay. The CIADC’s Caticlan project was regarded as the first privatization of an airport terminal. The modernization of the Caticlan airport alone is worth around P2.5 billion, and the total project’s estimated cost is P10 billion.

The upgrading involves the construction of a bigger airport passenger terminal, extension of the existing runway from 950 meters to 2,100 meters to accommodate bigger aircraft, improvement of the road network, and upgrading of airport facilities and air traffic control aids. The proponents have also committed to build other support utilities, install fire-fighting equipment and construct a diversion road.

A year later, San Miguel Corporation through its subsidiary, San Miguel Holdings, Corporation acquired a majority interest in the CIADC from Yang, Rafael Puno, Lino Barte ad RPRP Ventures Management and Development Corporation. Plans included the extension of the runway 2,100 meters from 950 by reclaiming part of the Sibuyan Sea and flattening the hill near the airport, to allow bigger aircraft to land there. By doing so, the passenger terminal capacity can then accommodate 1.5 million passengers annually.

References

Citation

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