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Paolo Benigno Aquino IV

Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino is the youngest Senator of the 16th Congress of the Republic of the Philippines. In 2003, he became the youngest head of a government agency when, at 25, was appointed as the Chairperson of the National Youth Commission, the primary national policy-making body for Filipino youth. Bam also co-founded the social enterprise Hapinoy, which has received global awards for helping lift poor Filipinos out of poverty through micro-finance and micro-enterprise support. Bam has dedicated his entire career to empowering the youth and the poor, helping thousands of Filipinos improve their lives through access to opportunities and crucial support systems. Because of this work, he was named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Philippines in 2010, one of the Asian Social Entrepreneurs of the Year in 2011 and one of the Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World in 2012.

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Hybrid Social Enterprise
Blockchain; Workforce and Employment; Retail, Consumer Goods and Lifestyle; Social Innovation; ASEAN; Philippines; Gender Inequality
Areas of Impact
ASEAN, Philippines


Hapinoy is a social enterprise that empowers and enables microentrepreneurs in rural areas. It aggregates and organizes the Philippines' massive network of informal sari-sari stores into a network and community. By creating alternative distribution channels for essential products, it links isolated communities with a variety of service providers and large businesses. Hapinoy's bulk-sourcing approach has resulted in up to 15% discounts on certain products for small-owner stores, and enabled the distribution of quality-of-life goods such as medicine and solar products to communities.

Hapinoy's value chain development has allowed thousands to increase their income. Serving as business partners to the poor on various levels, Hapinoy provides personal development and business training, capacity-building and community leadership programmes for storeowners, most of whom are mothers with little access to such benefits. In 2011, Hapinoy operated in 12 provinces in the Philippines, reaching 160 communities; its 10,000 stores served hundreds of thousands of customers, many living in isolated areas in South Luzon.

By tapping into communities and new distribution channels, Hapinoy hopes to expand further. It aims to provide not only common products, but also other necessary rural community services, such as mobile money, healthcare, and technology solutions in partnership with local/national non-governmental organizations and companies. Additionally, the network will eventually serve as a platform for reverse integration into the value chain for goods produced at the community level by micro-producers.


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