THE MANILA TIMES has appointed veteran newspaper executive Blanquita “Blanca” Calilung Mercado as its chief operating officer (COO) effective October 2015.
Before joining the Times, Mercado had a long stint with BusinessWorld, where she rose from the ranks from chief accountant to vice president and chief financial officer (CFO).
In recent years, she also served on the board of that business paper, representing the employees’ retirement fund.
“We are delighted to have Blanca on board as she brings a wealth of newspaper management experience and insight, especially in marketing and finance,” said Dante “Klink” Ang 2nd, executive editor, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of The Manila Times.
“We are confident that Blanca will contribute greatly to our goal of serving our readers better, like in the old glory days of The Manila Times,” Ang added.
The Times is the longest-running national daily in the Philippines, celebrating its 117th founding anniversary also this October.
For much of the 20th century, it was the leading national daily not only in the Philippines but throughout Southeast Asia, even earning the title “the grand old dame” of newspapers.
Today, the Times is the No. 1 national daily in opinion, with columnists like former Ambassador Rigoberto “Bobi” Tiglao, former Senator Francisco “Kit” Tatad, Yen Makabenta and many others.
Many of its writers and sections have received numerous awards and recognition.
Its weekly motoring section, Fast Times, is the reigning “Best Motoring Section” awardee of the Henry Ford Awards.
“While we are proud of what we have done so far to make The Manila Times great once again, we remain focused on serving our readers better in today’s Information Age,” Ang said. “And that’s where Blanca comes in.”
Mercado holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce, major in Accounting, from San Sebastian College on C.M. Recto Avenue in Manila, where she graduated magna cum laude. She also has a Management Accountant certificate from the Institute of Certified Management Accountants in Australia.
A certified public accountant (CPA) with a board exam rating of 86.43 percent, she has been a member of the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants since 1986.
“The Manila Times is a highly respected national daily newspaper with a strong brand and rich legacy. I look forward to becoming a member of The Times ‘family’ and joining its cause of serving Filipinos and their interests,” Mercado said.