I have been looking for a chief marketing strategist to replace me in Mansmith and Fielders Inc. I wanted to focus more on the social enterprise arm of Mansmith for small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs), Day 8 Business Academy Inc., where we have been training thousands of entrepreneurs yearly since 2000. Companies who are losing money do not even pay to be trained. The modest honorarium Mansmith CEO Chiqui Escareal-Go and I get from Day 8 are donated to fund scholarship thru the Josiah and Carolina Go Foundation (since 1992 where proceeds from our marketing and entrepreneurship book sales the last 25 years all went to).
Enter Edwin Totanes as Mansmith’s new chief marketing strategist. Edwin is no ordinary marketing man. He is a highly respected practitioner who turned the vision of taipan John Gokongwei to reality with the C2 Tea Drink, the most successful local ready-to-drink beverage brand in the Philippines. After being expatriated in Indonesia by publicly-listed food and beverage giant URC, he was recalled to the Philippines and successfully defended C2 against the soaring Del Monte Fit ‘n Right. When I launched my marketing blog on May 9, 2014, I have deliberately chosen him as my interview subject (https://josiahgo.com/qa-with-universal-robina-corporations-vp-marketing-edwin-totanes-on-launching-and-defending-new-products/) because of the respect I have for him not just as a marketing practitioner but as a great mentor to his subordinates. In fact, he was nominated by some previous Young Market Masters Awards (YMMA) winners to the 2nd Mansmith Market Masters Awards for senior marketers for 2017. His Q&A was also my most read entry in 2014 (https://josiahgo.com/my-top-10-qa-blog-posts-in-2014-by-josiah-go/).
To me, Edwin is a marketing rockstar who was the recipient of the “50 Most-Talented CMOs of Asia” award during the World Marketing Summit In Malaysia 2013 and the Agora award for Outstanding Achievement in Marketing Management in 2013. I am sure his efforts also contributed much to URC winning the 1st ever Asian Marketing Excellence Award given by the Asia Pacific Marketing Federation and handed by notable marketing author, Philip Kotler. We had the pleasure of working together as judges in the 2015 Agora Awards of the Philippine Marketing Association and I found his insights intellectually stimulating and him easy to work with.
Edwin was recently VP for Strategic Brand and Portfolio Development of publicly listed F&B giant, URC. Earlier he was URC’s General Manager of Grocery Division, then the beverage division; VP and General Manager of Coke-subsidiary Philippine Beverage Partners and Cold Drink Development Manager of Coke Thailand; Marketing Director for Del Monte Philippines; General Manager of the Swift Meat Division and was Chairman of The Corporate Marketing Committee of RFM; Group Brand Manager of Kraft as well as Warner Lambert, and was a Brand Manager for 5 years at Procter and Gamble, a solid 4 decades experience in the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry.
Edwin took Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School and spent some of his discretionary time teaching students at the Ateneo de Manila University, his alma mater, where he was a full scholar and graduated as cum laude.
Participants of marketing seminars in Mansmith and Fielders, Inc. will find him not just savvy in marketing but a witty story teller with a great sense of humor.
On behalf of Mansmith, I welcome Edwin. We are all excited as he heads the new marketing and brand audit consulting.