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From Poverty to Fortune: The Inspiring Story of Alfredo Yao, the King of Juice


Who knows what fate people have. That’s a suitable sentence to describe the figure of Alfredo Yao, a very rich businessman who used to live in poverty.

Quoting Forbes, Sunday (7/1/2023), Alfredo Yao is in 43rd place on the list of the richest people in the Philippines in 2023. He is recorded as having wealth of US$ 295 million or around Rp. 4.57 trillion (exchange rate 15,500).

Alfredo Yao is the founder of Macay Holdings, a manufacturer and distributor of carbonated soft drinks. His company, Zesto Corp. was founded with just US$ 50 selling fruit juice, root bee and noodles all over the world. He is also said to be the majority shareholder in Philippine Business Bank.

In August 2020, Macay acquired Artemisplus Express (Kitchen City), a domestic food service provider, for 2 billion pesos (US$ 41 million).

Meanwhile, quoted from The Filipino Times, Alfredo, who was nicknamed the king of juice, became successful thanks to his product Zest-O, which is an all-time favorite drink among Filipino children, especially in the 1990s.

“I started this business (Zest-O) with only 3,000 pesos and I’m not ashamed of it. If you want to know how poor I am, look for the 10 poorest people in one room, I’m probably one of those 10 people. So, don’t despair, ” he said to GoNegosyo.

Yao started helping his family at the age of 12 as a street vendor after his father died. In various interviews, he has said that being street smart is an important aspect of any business. He learned his knowledge of risks from his uncle who played mahjong.

Due to frequent financial problems previously, Alfredo was unable to complete his studies. However, with his determination to provide for his family, he worked in various factories in Manila where he learned about the process of molding plastic wrappers for candy.

In 1979, a packaging technology called doypack, namely aluminum drink wrappers, changed the way ready-to-drink juice was packaged abroad because the material used made it durable.

Yao first thought about bringing the technology to the Philippines to sell to juice companies. However, none of them believed that this packaging would sell well.

Having already purchased a machine, he decided to use it for his own juice business, not knowing the success that might lie ahead.

He asked his friend from the University of Santo Tomas, Mon Dellosa, to help him make an orange juice concoction and that’s where he achieved success.

“Zest means orange peel in French and then he added the letter O to make the sound rounder. It should be pronounced Zest-O, but for Filipinos it becomes Zes-to,” he told Phil Star.


2024-01-07 07:45:05
#Poor #Street #Vendor #Richest #Person

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