A new batch of 48 micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in MIMAROPA is set to undergo a free intensive business mentorship program under the Kapatid Mentor ME (KMME) – Money Market Encounter (MME). 

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) MIMAROPA, in partnership with the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship (PCE) – Go Negosyo, launched on Wednesday, 21 April, the first batch of the KMME-MME Online in the region, via Zoom.  

crowd shot of KMME-MME online mentorship

Qualified mentees belonged to various sectors including tourism, retail, food service, etc. The first batch comprised nine MSMEs from Marinduque, 10 MSMEs from Occidental Mindoro, 10 MSMEs from Oriental Mindoro, 10 MSMEs from Palawan, and nine MSMEs from Romblon. 

The KMME-MME Online is designed to integrate the Money Market Encounter (MME) into the regular KMME Program. Not to mention, in its second year of going online, KMME-MME runs are specialized based on different sectors such as youth, tourism, women-centered, retailers, and exporters among others. To not compromise the mentors, mentees, and other involved stakeholders, the 10-week long KMME- MME will be implemented in the new normal using the Zoom application. 

DTI-MIMAROPA Regional Director (RD) Joel B. Valera underlined that the KMME-MME Online promotes mindset change in the entrepreneurs that is success and innovation-driven. He then assures the mentees that the Negosyo Centers in the region shall assist them in the conduct of the modules.

“We believe that our programs are designed to contribute tremendous strides toward economic recovery especially in the rural setting. Ang abundant ng opportunities for MSMEs in the new normal, that’s why we must guide and cultivate them along the way,” RD Valera added.  

For 2021, the KMME-MME Online Modules are focused on entrepreneurial mind-setting and values formation, marketing mindset, business model canvas, operations management, digitalization, supply and value chain management, accounting and finance for small businesses, human resource management, market-driven innovation on product development and market expansion and internationalization, and good governance and ethics. 

In addition to the abovementioned modules, coaching sessions will be made available to assist the mentees during the drafting of their Business Improvement Plans (BIPs) and improve their materials and presentation skills.

Undersecretary Blesila A. Lantayona of the DTI-Regional Operations Group graced the launching program and acknowledged the different stakeholders who have made the upgraded KMME-MME Online a success despite the ongoing pandemic. 

On behalf of Presidential Adviser Joey Concepcion of PCE, Engr. Merely M. Cruz, Go Negosyo’s Senior Adviser for MSME Development, expressed appreciation to the leadership of DTI-MIMAROPA for hosting the KMME-MME Online this year. Likewise, Engr. Cruz assures the mentees that the institution will guide the mentees to survive and to a certain extent, help restart their businesses.

Ellen Muros of Mamas YamiDeli from Romblon shared her excitement as one of the qualified mentees in this batch. “Expectation after the program, matulungan ma-improve ang aking product para maging mas competitive sa market at madagdagan at mapalaki ang market namin,” she said. 

Furthermore, Paula Nikole Prado of Iconik Travel Services in Palawan said that “[We aim] to be able to connect with mentors and coaches who will guide us with the development of our community’s products and operations of our shared service facility. Thank you po again for this opportunity.”

In his closing remarks, DTI-MIMAROPA Assistant Regional Director Rodolfo J. Mariposque emphasized the value-adding role of MSMEs to the overall economic development of the country as they account for 99.6% of the total enterprises. 

The program kickstarts on 23 April and will end on 4 July 2021, with a virtual graduation ceremony for mentees who have completed the module sessions and have passed the BIP presentation and defense.

Registration for Batch 2 of the KMME-MME Online for aspiring mentees from MIMAROPA will open on May 2021. ♦

Date of Release: 22 April 2021