Sisters extend Lolo Tinong’s legacy-A A +A
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
HARD work, dedication and family unity are key for family-owned businesses to thrive and survive across generations, said Nicole Alectis Villo-Escobido.
Escobido belongs to the fourth generation of the Villo family, who runs one of Cebu’s popular bakeshops, the Lolo Tinong’s Bakery.
“We took care of the business because it was our great-grandfather’s legacy to us. The store, since its inception 89 years ago, has already touched so many lives of Cebuanos,” Escobido told Sun.Star Cebu. She said the recipes of their bread products have not changed since the bakery started its operation. Each kind of bread they make has a distinct taste, Escobido said.
“We remained competitive despite the entry of new players, all because we continued the legacy left for us. The Lolo Tinong’s Bakery has made products that’s once tasted, always wanted,” said Escobido.
Lolo Tinong’s Bakery started in 1923 when Faustino Villo opened a bakery, which he named Tinong’s Bakery, using a drum for an oven and bamboo poles for dough rollers. The bakery became famous for its tasty bread.
Soon after, his oldest son, Ruperto, joined the business and helped run the bakery.
Rolito, the grandchild, who inherited both the baking and entrepreneurial skills, later succeeded the business. He revived it with a new corporate identity: Lolo Tinong’s Bakery.
Escobido said her father improved the products and expanded the business, which now has over 100 branches not only in Cebu but also in neighboring islands.
“The success of Lolo Tinong’s Bakery in the market was a product of all the family-members’ effort and dedication. The bread we produced were a product from generation to generation,” she said. “If there’s one thing our great-grandfather has wonderfully done, it was that he made the family united and intact through this business.”
Now on its fourth generation, Escobido, together with her sisters Emeralde Villo-Hermosilla, Lalinka Villo-Yu and Xedessa Villo-Cuyos, diversified the business by opening another brand called Bread After Bread, “exquisite delights by Lolo Tinong’s Bakery.”
All four sisters have distinct roles in running the bakery, which is positioned to cater to the middle-income market segment.
“Bread After Bread is the baking and entrepreneurial skills of the fourth-generation,” said Escobido. She said they came up with their own recipes from scratch but still incorporated ingredients passed on by the previous generations.
Unlike Lolo Tinong’s whose strength is in the neighborhood bakeshop, Bread After Bread will cater to a different market such as those living in subdivisions or new
communities being built by developers.
The sisters will formally open the first Bread After Bread outlet in Consolacion today. They plan to open two more outlets in Carcar and Talamban before the year ends.
They also intend to open the business for franchising after three years of operation.
Although they capture different target markets, Escobido said the two bakeshops share a thing in common: to earn the customers’ patronage by making bread at high quality but selling them at an accessible price.
Escobido said they sell bread for as low as P8. They also retained one of their great-grand father’s famous bread, his old fashioned German bread.
Escobido, who is the operations manager, is optimistic the new venture would be accepted by the market, given Lolo Tinong’s resiliency and leadership in Cebu’s bakeshop industry.
“One important advice we learned from our ancestors is that our biggest competitor is ourselves. That’s why we are putting much effort in maintaining the cleanliness of our stores, providing great service and most of all, delivering quality products to customers,” she said.
On top of growing Bread After Bread, Escobido said the family has also started the renovation of all Lolo Tinong’s branches in a bid to compete with other players in the market.
Aside from over 25 kinds of breads, Bread After Bread also offers drinks such as coffee. The stores will also have Wi-fi connectivity.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 18, 2012.