For emerging victorious for a record-tying four consecutive times in the recently ended PBA Philippine Cup, the SMBeermen upheld San Miguel Corp.’s rich winning tradition in the local sports scene.
For proving anew they’re still the best team in the land with an All-Filipino line up, the Beermen showed all and sundry why SMC has always been at the forefront of every Philippine campaign in all international competitions in almost all sports,
Be it in basketball, boxing, athletics, cycling, golf archery, baseball, dragon boat, judo, karatedo, wrestling, muay thai and even in such events as petanque and lawn bowling, which are alien to the Filipinos.
Ramon S. Ang, the SMC president and CEO, for instance, almost single-handedly gifted the Philippines its first overall championship in the 11-nation Southeast Asian Games by sponsoring the participation of the Filipino hopefuls in 11 sports 13 years ago.
The grand scheme, an idea of the First Gentleman Mike Arroyo, which he called “The Sports Grandfather Plan,” netted the Philippines 56 gold medals out of the total 113 the country won for a high 49.56 percentage.
All throughout the years from the mid-19th century when San Miguel Beer (SMC’S original name) named after a district in Spain where the brewery was located, was brought to the country by Spanish businessman, Señor Enrique Maria Barreto y Ycaza, the conglomerate has been one of the strongest pillars in the Philippines sports development program.
San Miguel, in fact, is the oldest existing corporate entity that has remained at the forefront of the country’s most glorious years not only in the Asian scene but the world as well.
For over 100 years, from October 20, 1890 when Señor Barreto landed in the country, San Miguel continuously been of service to Philippine sports.
Ang, RSA to SMC employees, associates and friends in the business and sports sectors, is actually carrying the vision of great businessmen sportsmen who started the corporation’s involvement in sports.
They are the father-son tandem of Andres Soriano Sr. and Andres Jr. and sibling Andres III and the Cojuangco brothers, Ambassador Eduardro “Ðanding” and Enrique “Henry.”
The Sorianos, of course, can be credited for establishing Asia’s oldest golf tournament — the Philippine Open—besides elevating the sport into the mainstream by pioneering he Philippine Golf Circuit and helping, too, organize he Asian Golf Circuit.
San Miguel, through the efforts of the Sorianos, was, likewise, into the youth football and junior golf development, helping in the sending of national teams to the prestigious Gothia and Helsinki Cups (football) tilts in Europe and jungolf tourneys in the United States.
(To be continued)