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Editing by Nathaniel Cajuday
In line with the celebration of the Philippine Blockchain Week, an awards night called the “Philippine Block Awards” was celebrated last December 2, 2022, which honors leaders in financial, technology, and business industries for supporting and promoting the adoption of blockchain in the country.
The awarding body has recognitions such as Leader of the Year, and Leader of the Future, Blockchain Champions.
For the Leader of the Year Award, UnionBank of the Philippines Chairman Dr. Justo A. Ortiz brought home the bacon.
His background in the space includes being the chair of the Fintech Association of the Philippines, Blockchain Association of the Philippines, and Philippine Payments Management, Inc. Ortiz is also a board member of the Global Fintech Alliance founded in Denmark.
Accordingly, UnionBank of the Philippines launched its crypto trading and custody services last month to select retail clients via its mobile application. The crypto-licensed bank also announced in a joint statement with METACO, a market provider for financial institutions to offer digital assets. UnionBank also entered the metaverse in October as it joined The Sandbox, one of the world’s leading metaverse platforms. (Read more: Crypto-Licensed UnionBank Pilots Bitcoin Trading)
In September, UnionBank also inaugurated its UnionBank Innovation Campus, a hub for research and development that will enhance the bank’s digital capabilities. (Read more: UnionBank Innovation Hub)
“Dr. Ortiz has helped pave the way for the financial industry to adopt Web3 technology. He heads many of the country’s blockchain groups. Rien, meanwhile, has shown us that young people can make a change in the world through blockchain. We hope that Filipinos will be inspired by their work and start learning more about the technology,” Donald Lim, one of the convenors of PH Blockchain Week, said.
The hailed Blockchain Leader of the Future is eighth grader Rien Lewis Pecson.
It can be remembered that in 2021, Pecson, who was only 12 years old at that time, created the world’s first blockchain-based voting platform, iVote.ph. He developed the platform with artist Neil Fernandez, Jr., who created its NFT art. (Read more: Twelve-year-old Filipino Develops NFT-based Voting Platform)
Several leaders and innovators in blockchain, crypto, web3, NFTs, and gaming have also been recognized by the award-giving body as the first Blockchain Champions of the country:
- Atty. Mark S. Gorriceta, Managing Partner and Head of the Technology Media and Telecommunications Group of Gorriceta Africa Cauton & Saavedra
- Ann J. Cuisia, CEO of Traxion Tech
- Atty. Kelvin Lester K. Lee, Commissioner of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
- Imelda C. Tiongson, President and Execom Member of Opal Portfolio Investments, Inc., Independent Director of PruLife UK, and a Trustee of both the Fintech Alliance Ph and Fintech Association of the Philippines
- Henry Rhoel R. Aguda, Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Technology & Ops Officer of UnionBank of the Philippines
- Luis Buenaventura II, Country Manager of Yield Guild Games
- Gail Concepcion Cruz-Macapagal, Country Director of DynaQuest Technology Services, Inc.
- Nichel O. Gaba, CEO of Philippine Digital Asset Exchange
- Gabby Dizon, Co-founder of Yield Guild Games
- Miguel Cuneta, Founder of Bitmark.ph and Co-founder and chief community officer of Satoshi Citadel Industries.
“These are the men and women who have advanced the use of blockchain and Web3 technologies in the Philippines. They are also the ones leading the way for its adoption and pushing for the Philippines to be the blockchain hub in Asia,” Lim stated.
Moreover, with the success of the inaugural Philippine Blockchain Week, Lim highlighted that this is an indication that Filipinos welcome blockchain adoption and that the world recognizes its potential, adding that “with the government’s help, we know that we can make the Philippines the blockchain hub in the region.”
The Philippine Block Awards served as the closing ceremony of the inaugural Philippine Blockchain Week.
This article is published on BitPinas: Philippine Block Awards Presents UnionBank Chairman with Leader of the Year Accolade
Disclaimer: BitPinas articles and its external content are not financial advice. The team serves to deliver independent, unbiased news to provide information for Philippine-crypto and beyond.