MARIKINA CITY — The programs and services of the Marikina Creative and Innovation Hub were officially unveiled during the launch event held on 04 December 2023 at the Center for Innovation and Technology for Enterprises (CITE), Marikina City.  

Led by Marikina City 2nd District Representative Congresswoman Sella Luz Quimbo, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary for Competitiveness and Innovation Group Rafaelita Aldaba, and DTI Assistant Secretary for Regional Operations Group Dominic Tolentino, Jr., the launch gathered more than a hundred key stakeholders both from the creative space and innovation ecosystem. 

The Marikina Creative and Innovation Hub, in alignment with the Philippine Creative Industries Development Act (RA 11904), stands as a conducive and integrated resource center for startups and businesses, opening opportunities for collaboration, entrepreneurship, and innovation. Usec. Aldaba reiterated this mission of providing “a nurturing environment for creative startups and MSMEs, where their innovative ideas can flourish.” She added, “This hub is for all, beyond here to bridge the gap between ambition and achievement, to turn vision into successful enterprises.” 

While it is located in the heart of the City of Marikina and is being operated under the DTI–National Capital Region Office (DTI-NCRO), this Hub is envisioned to be the driving force behind the transformation of the entire creative landscape. 

“Gusto ko lang pong i-emphasize na bagamat ang startup facility na ito ay naka locate dito sa lungsod ng Marikina, ang facility na ito ay para sa ating lahat, ito po ay para sa bagong Pilipinas, sa atin lahat ito”, Cong. Quimbo echoed. 

In addition to this, Asec. Tolentino Jr. expressed his gratitude to DTI-NCRO for managing the operation of the Hub. “DTI is very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to establish the facility in the DTI-NCRO, and be an instrument to the development of the vibrant startup community. The launch marks a significant milestone in our commitment to cultivate a vibrant ecosystem where entrepreneurs can unleash their potential, learn from each other, and contribute to the broader tapestry of progress.” 

The Hub is set to become the frontier of creativity and innovation in the Philippines through its exhibition spaces, government booths, makerspaces, co-working spaces, collaboration and networking opportunities, and business support and entrepreneurship services. Uniquely, the Hub will pioneer a ‘retail incubator’ strategy, spotlighting the inventive products to a wider audience. 

The two implementation partners of the Hub were also officially introduced during the event. Launch garage Innovation Hub is set to take charge in the roll-out of the Incubation, Development, and Entrepreneurial Assistance (IDEA) Program and the Accelerating Development, Valuation, and Corporate Entrepreneurship (ADVanCE) Program. Now on their 2nd cohort, these two existing DTI Programs will be focusing on the creatives sector. 

On the other hand, Certeza+Technoearth Joint Venture will be undertaking the formulation of the Hub’s Master Plan, ensuring the sustainability of the facility. 

The event also witnessed the culmination of the “E-commerce Capacity and Digital Transformation for Marikina Footwear Industry Program”, a joint initiative of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), DTI, and Eskwelabs in pursuit of revolutionizing the said industry through digital transformation. The program, which ran from October to November 2023, equipped 14 Marikina footwear companies and 30 student apprentices. 

While the Hub is finishing its construction phase, some of its pilot services, such as the IDEA and ADVanCE programs, will be running in parallel with the formulation of the Master Plan. ♦

Date of release: 07 December 2023