Mang Delfin’s Putong Polo, Pancit Malabon and Native Kakanin is a family business ran by Delfin Gutierrez, Jr. They specialize in baking Putong Pulo, a native Valenzuelano delicacy, and in cooking mouth-watering Pancit Malabon.

After graduating from high school, Delfin had no idea what course to take up in college since he was so busy taking care of their business. He realized that he needed to go to college for him to have a stable job and a better future. Even with his experience as a tindero growing up, it never crossed his mind that he would be an entrepreneur. Delfin spent 2 and a half years in college before eventually deciding to focus on being a full-time tindero to support his family. For him, experiencing both positive and negative situations in their business growing up helped prepare him for the challenge of managing the family business.

In 2001, when his mom flew to the US, she gave the full responsibility of managing the business to Delfin and told him that he must work on his own and prepare to face the world of being an entrepreneur. She also entrusted all the materials and recipes needed in making Putong Pulo. With an initial capital of 5,000 pesos, he started the business.

Running the business was not always smooth sailing, he did not escape those rough days, he borrowed money from loan sharks for him to keep the business striving. He started making partnerships with rice dealers, sugar suppliers and other merchants for him to have a credit line. At first, these suppliers gave him a small number of products with a short timeline for the dues, but as the business continued to grow, he was able to buy ingredients in bulk with longer payment terms. It showed him that trust is very important in doing business.

Like the lowly mustard seed, his business continued to grow. Delfin was able to cater to more customers when he opened his 2nd branch in Karuhatan, Valenzuela. This milestone made his Putong Pulo a household name in the industry and locality. He then started offering new products to his customers, such as Pancit Malabon.

In 2018, Delfin opened his 3rd branch in Bancal, Meycauayan Bulacan but had to close it in 2020 due to unforeseen events.

When one door closes, another opens!

The same year, another opportunity knocked when someone from DTI came to his store in Valenzuela and invited him to be part of the KMME, or the Kapatid Mentor Me Program. At first, he thought that he was too old to learn, but he realized that it was important for his business. Delfin finished KMME on September 6, 2018 and, according to him, became a full-fledged entrepreneur.

When the pandemic started, he was able to run his business smoothly because of the lessons he had learned from the KMME program equipped him with the necessary skills and tools to face any challenge.

The same year, as a token of appreciation to what God has given him, he and his team extended their arms and helped our heroes by donating food packs and water to the frontline workers who risked their lives everyday. As for him, “when you plant a good seed, you will harvest a good crop”.

On April 4, 2022, the DOST Financing Set-Up of Technology extended its hand and lent 5 types of machines that the business needed for a faster and more systematic process to increase the production output. They also provided trainings and assisted him in improving the lay-out of their production area.

With all the blessings that his family and business received after completing the KMME modules, he believes that, “Truly, MSMEs need to be a part of the DTI Mentor Me Program. It is a big help for you and your business.” In closing, Mang Delfin says that his life story is proof that nothing happens by chance and everything that happens has a reason.”*

Date of release: 05 January 2023