Technology

Regtech startup UNAWA aims to empower SMEs

Mona Dimalanta, CEO of regtech startup UNAWA, said they want to help SMEs and startups overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mona Dimalanta, CEO of regtech startup UNAWA, said they want to help SMEs and startups overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have been described as a “ticking time bomb” in the Philippines. To help them cope with business uncertainties amid the pandemic, regulatory technology (regtech) startup UNAWA is hosting a free webinar. This webinar on April 17 will provide insights from legal experts and seasoned entrepreneurs.

Around 99.6% of businesses in the country are SMEs, employing 66% of the workforce. On March 16, the government placed Luzon under an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ). Originally set to last until April 12, the ECQ has been extended until April 30. Moreover, even if the ECQ finally ends, the effects of the pandemic could last much longer. SME owners will have to make hard decisions to keep their companies afloat.

Helping SMEs move forward

“We have seen the importance of a community helping each other out in times of crises. UNAWA is dedicated to helping its fellow startups and SMEs emerge from the pandemic successfully. This free webinar is part of our efforts to create a community of entrepreneurs that support each other and remind each other that they are not alone in facing these problems,” UNAWA CEO Mona Dimalanta said in a press statement.

Regtech refers to the use of technology to facilitate the management of regulatory processes. UNAWA aims to help entrepreneurs start, grow, and scale their business in the digital economy.

UNAWA’s “Unlocking the Lockdown: Startup and SME Challenges and Opportunities Amid the Pandemic” free webinar will be held on Friday, April 17, from 5-6 PM.

The panelists include Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, president of eco-ethical fashion house Rags2Riches and founder of e-commerce platform Things That Matter PH; Darwin Mariano, founder of ticketing platform and crowdfunding project facilitator Ticket2Me; and Rommel Ng, founder of informational platform The Resto Coach and co-owner of restaurant chain Buffalo’s Wings N’ Things.

Addressing legal concerns

Rounding out the panel are Regina Jacinto-Barrientos, CEO of Puyat, Jacinto, and Santos (PJS) Law; and Dimalanta. The two will offer legal insights on how businesses can stay afloat while a significant part of the country is in lockdown.

“We at PJS Law are committed to helping SMEs with any of their legal concerns in these trying times,” Jacinto-Barrientos said in a press statement. “Entrepreneurs have a lot on their plate in their efforts to sustain their business, so we are working with UNAWA to reach startup and SME communities and provide relevant legal and regulatory solutions.”

Interested in participating? Register for the free webinar by filling out this form on or before Thursday, April 16, 5 PM.