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xchange is an incubator for early-stage social enterprises in the Philippines.

We invest in organizations – both for-profit and non-profit – whose core mission is the creation of value for marginalized communities in the Philippines.

We are an active investor, working closely with our portfolio companies to help them achieve their goals. Beyond capital, we seek to contribute our expertise in enterprise management and finance, built over decades of firsthand experience.

Our mission is to multiply the change that social enterprises achieve, by helping them reach sustainability and scale in the shortest possible time.

Meet the Team

Rico Gonzalez

Rico Gonzalez

Managing Director

Rico is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of xchange, an impact-first social enterprise incubator in the Philippines, investing in high potential early-stage social enterprises, while providing full-time mentorship to help them grow and achieve scale.

Rico began his career as a philosophy teacher at the Ateneo de Manila University, before becoming a research analyst at Asia Equity, the first foreign-owned investment house in the Philippines. Subsequently, Rico moved to Hong Kong to work at Cazenove (later acquired by JP Morgan), managing a team of analysts to cover banks and insurance companies across Asia. In 2003, Rico returned to the Philippines, and, together with his wife and partners, ran Information Gateway, a pioneering mobile content company that grew to become one of the largest players in the space. Here he gained much practical experience around running and scaling enterprises. In 2009, Rico began to focus his efforts on building the social enterprise sector in the Philippines, and in 2011, founded xchange together with his wife. Rico holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy from the Ateneo de Manila University.

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Nono Coliangco

Nono Coliangco

Managing Director

Nono is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of xchange, an impact-first social enterprise incubator in the Philippines, investing in high potential early-stage social enterprises, while providing full-time mentorship to help them grow and achieve scale.

Nono’s expertise in finance, mobile, technology and enterpreneurship is the culmination of her professional experience as a banker to her life as a start-up founder. Nono’s career began in the field of private equity with the firm Olympus Capital in Hong Kong. Shortly thereafter, she started and co-founded Information Gateway, a mobile value-added services company, which grew to become the Philippine market leader in the mobile VAS industry. Nono graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Business Administration.

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Greg Perez

Greg Perez

Director

Greg joined xchange in September 2014. She was formerly Executive Director of social enterprise Gifts and Graces Fair Trade Foundation.

Prior to xchange, she was Microfinance and Livelihood Manager at Families and Children for Empowerment and Development Foundation, a foundation providing services to poorest of the poor families in Paco and Pandacan. Greg is strongly committed to social equity and poverty eradication through entrepreneurship, education, and culture. Passionate, resourceful, and an accomplished leader with an established international network, Greg possesses a valuable combination of business management skills and a humanistic, social development perspective. She has a wide range of experience in social development and social entrepreneurship including grassroots level organizing, microfinance, financial literacy, production, and research. In business, Greg has demonstrated the ability to lead multi-cultural, cross-functional teams remotely and face-to-face, clarify and crystallize vision, addresses short-term and long-term issues with problem solving and strategic planning, and execute on plan. Greg completed her MBA in 2013 from IE Business School in Madrid and Brown University in Providence. She is an Asia Society Asia 21 Philippines Fellow, Class of 2007.

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Erika Tatad

Erika Tatad

Director

Prior to joining xchange, Erika was Managing Director of Hapinoy, a social enterprise that works with women micro-entrepreneurs to grow their small village shops (“sari-sari stores”) through training and education, access to capital, and new business opportunities. She served as Regional Director for Asia Pacific of the World Youth Alliance, a UN-affiliated youth organization based in New York, focused on dignity and development. Erika also worked as a Senior Strategy Manager for k2 interactive (now part of Publicis Jimenez Basic), a Manila- based boutique strategy and communications firm, handling key accounts in the FMCG, banking, real estate and logistics industries.

Erika completed her International Diploma Programs in Global Business Management and Marketing from UC Berkeley, as well as an internship with World of Good, a leading US-based social enterprise now with the eBay group. She is an Asia Society Class of 2010 Asia 21 Philippines Fellow, a recipient of the 2015 Freedom for Excellence Award from the World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific and a 2016 Kathryn Hoomkwap Awardee.

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Rizza Mariano

Rizza Mariano

Finance Director

Before joining xchange, Rizza was the Corporate Finance Head of the Biolink Pharma and NutraMedica Group of Companies. Her career in finance began as an auditor with Sycip, Gorres, Velayo & Co. After SGV, she took on the role of Finance Controller and Consultant for the USA Subsidiary Cynamid Philippines, the Regional Headquarters of Knoll, and Abbot Laboratories among others. Rizza is a Certified Public Accountant and a SAP Business One consultant.

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Our Family

Ashoka

Terri Jayme-Mora, Country Manager

Recognized as a “catalyst for social entrepreneurship activities around the country”, Ashoka Philippines works to maintain the strength and vibrancy of the Philippine citizen sector by identifying and supporting the best and most effective ideas on the ground, carried out by leading Filipino social entrepreneurs. Ashoka seeks to harness the passion, experience, and expertise of these individuals by providing critical financial support and welcoming them into a global Fellowship of over 3,000 social entrepreneurs from more than 70 countries.

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Bagosphere

Zhihan Lee, CEO
Ellwyn Tan, COO

Bagosphere empowers rural out-of-school youths by providing them with the necessary skills to join the BPO industry. It runs a “study now, pay later” call center training facility, which uses a specially-developed 2-month program that equips students with English communication and soft skills to make them ideal candidates for the call center industry. Eighty percent of Bagosphere’s students are employed within two months and go on to earn an income 4x higher than unskilled work, thus enabling rural youth to save for their professional and personal goals.

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Bayani Brew

Ron Dizon, CEO
Xilca Alvarez-Protacio, Co-Founder, Community Development & Organization

Bayani Brew is a social enterprise in the competitive fast-moving ready-to-drink iced tea market. As a social enterprise, Bayani Brew advocates the use of local and indigenous ingredients and sources its agri raw materials from organic farming communities such as farmers in Angat, Bulacan through the GK Enchanted Farm, Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) beneficiaries in Dona Remedios Trinidad, Bulacan, and Good Food farmers in Capas, Tarlac. Its mission is to make subsistence farmers’ hand-to-mouth existence a thing of the past. Bayani Brew wants to be remembered not only for its refreshing beverages but also as part of a movement brewing a new breed of Filipinos crazy in love with the country.

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engageSPARK

Ravi Agarwal, Founder & CEO
Avner Mizrahi, COO

engageSPARK is a platform for Businesses and NGOs to interact, at scale, with the 5 billion people who have no Internet access or can’t afford data plans regularly. Organizations in over 100 countries, such as Convergys, Facebook, Google, Intel, and UNICEF, have easily and quickly created interaction flows in just minutes using a combination of Automated Phone Calls, 2-Way SMS, and Facebook Messenger. They dramatically increase engagement rates by making it free for their beneficiaries, customers, and staff to opt-in and engage via any mobile phone.

engageSPARK has democratized this technology for any size organization in any country, including ones without IT staff. Anyone can use their 3-step wizards to easily build and launch Blasts, Surveys, Auto Replies, Interviews, Information Services, Curriculums, IVR, and Hotlines campaigns. Their platform also incorporates Missed Calls and Prepaid Airtime Transfer to further increase engagement rates. As a social enterprise, they especially focus on programs that impact the poor or marginalized communities.

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EVEE

Rex Darell Vergel, COO

Electric Vehicle Expansion Enterprises, Inc. (EVEE) focuses on two areas in the Philippine public transportation industry: the growth of electric vehicles through the use of ejeepneys and the modernization of the Philippine public transportation industry through the introduction of efficiencies and new practices, such as removal of the boundary system.

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Hapinoy

Mark Ruiz, President, Microventures Inc.
Jalu Go, Director of Operations, Microventures Inc.

Hapinoy is a program that seeks to empower the marginalized, last-mile micro-retail sector of the Filipino economy by fostering inclusive distribution channels and business strategies. Concentrating on village mom-and-pop stores, owned mostly by female micro-entrepreneurs, Hapinoy provides small business owners with tools to sustainably grow their businesses through training and education; leadership development; access to capital, as well as new business opportunities.

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ORE

Erel Narida, President

One Renewable Energy Enterprise Inc. (OREEi) seeks to empower the roughly 2.5 million off-grid and un-electrified households in the Philippines via community-based, solarpowered development solutions, including solar lamps, solar water pumps, solar charging stations, micro-grids, etc. By providing off-grid families and institutions access to their energy needs, OREEi enables cleaner indoor air, higher productivity, and greater economic opportunities. OREEi also possesses decades of experience and deep technical expertise in the design and installation of solar PV systems for commercial and residential clients.

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Rags2Riches

Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, President

Rags2Riches, Inc. (“R2R”) is a fashion and design house that empowers community artisans. Partnering with Filipino artisans across the country, R2R creates eco-ethical fashion and home accessories out of upcycled scrap cloth, organic materials, and indigenous fabrics. These products are featured and sold both locally and internationally, in stores such as Anthropologie (US, Europe), as well as R2R’s own retail outlets in Metro Manila, and online. In a world where fashion and design are often seen as excess, R2R is proof the style and sustainability can coexist.

R2R does not only provide artisans with opportunities for sustainable livelihood; it seeks to enhance their dignity and self-respect through community organization and life skills training. R2R sees itself as a life and livelihood partner for its artisans, as they create better futures for their families and communities.

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