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A backyard on the bay: Ramson Llanto

Spanning 107 hectares, Calaca Industrial Seaport Corp is fast becoming the leading location of choice for businesses looking for areas to put up manufacturing plants, warehouses, storage tanks and other facilities, especially those that are reliant on water transport.

Ramson Llanto, General Manager of Calaca Industrial Seaport Corp

The holistically managed industrial park is complete with deep-well water supply, large electrical lines providing substantial power, an expansive network of wireless services, roads and walkways for easy access, and round-the-clock security within a guarded compound.

Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Inc owned the company in 2009 before it was transferred to Udenna Land Inc (formerly Udenna Development Corporation) in 2017. After purchasing the company, Phoenix-Udenna implemented changes and expanded its board facilities. Since then, the business has grown exponentially and is close to finalising an ambitious five-year program.

General Manager Ramson Llanto and his team hope to replicate the business in two to three more locations in the Philippines. “We’ve achieved a lot of growth. For 10 years now, we’ve had a channel to progress,” Ramson beams.

“Since the Udenna Group took over, we were able to bring in locators (companies who use Calaca’s facilities) who want to lease or buy our storage tanks and warehousing, or put up their own manufacturing plants. We are more flexible in terms of products and financial schemes for our locators.”

Ramson originally joined the company as Marketing Manager, and then took on the role of General Manager in 2019. “The management encouraged me to take this opportunity to sustain the programs that we have, and help it to grow further in the coming years,” he says.

Ramson Llanto, General Manager of Calaca Industrial Seaport Corp

While many industrial parks are based inland, Calaca is strategically located along the deep-water portions of Balayan Bay in Batangas, 110 kilometres south of Manila.

“With more than 7,000 islands surrounded on all sides by water, offering the benefits of both a seaport and an industrial park puts us and our customers ahead in the game. Our onboard facilities, which are required by our locators – predominantly catering to the domestic market – rely heavily on water transport,” Ramson explains.

“We’ve undergone ISO certification. We conduct surveys to determine the quality of our service desk.”

“With limited port congestion, less waiting time, minimal demurrage and increased productivity, it’s like our clients have a backyard on the bay that streamlines logistics. It saves businesses time and effort, and brings higher value for their money.”

The company has created a values acronym, TIDES, that represents Teamwork, Integrity, Dedication, Excellence and Stewardship. “We stick to these values in how we operate and conduct ourselves,” Ramson assures.

These values are also reflected in its high-quality customer service, which is an integral part of its mission. “We have undergone ISO certification,” Ramson says.

“We conduct surveys to determine the quality of our service desk. We liaise with our locators for meetings and coordination so that if there’s an issue, we try to resolve it and make the decision as quickly as possible. Sometimes, however, you have to make a decision that is for the betterment of the whole but maybe not for one specific party.”

Ramson Llanto, General Manager of Calaca Industrial Seaport Corp

Challenges are inevitable, and Ramson has learned from the tough times throughout his career. His approach is to nip them in the bud and stop them before they happen. But he also digs into all the information necessary to make a calculated decision.

“Some decisions are bigger than others but, hopefully, there will be fewer consequences,” he explains. “There are always smaller issues that need to be dealt with, but when you learn from the situation, you can be more prepared for future obstacles.”

The company is looking to expand its business in the coming year and take advantage of the country’s industrial growth. “We will build more warehouses and look for more land to develop,” Ramson says. “Based on our market study, there is a financial opportunity with the ongoing infrastructure development in the Philippines.

“There is a financial opportunity with the ongoing infrastructure development in the Philippines.”

“There is greater movement of goods, and ecommerce is growing. To gear up for this kind of development we are planning, we are streamlining the organisation so that our people are better equipped to face bigger pressures and responsibilities. We are constantly looking for ways to bring goods to the consumer faster and more efficiently.

“We want to be at the forefront of building new regional locations as logistic battlegrounds, paving the way to our country’s progress.”

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