Who is Alice Eduardo?
ALICE EDUARDO: A WOMAN OF STEEL
If there’s one fitting title for Alice Eduardo—the President and CEO of Sta. Elena Construction and Development—that would be Woman of Steel. Making a mark for herself since 1995, she led her construction firm, now an AAA and Large B company which means it has a capitalization of at least Php300 million and qualifies to bid for any billion-peso project, to what it is today.
In an industry dominated by male, how one will stand out? Alice Eduardo, our country’s construction magnate, knows the answer.Proving how trivial gender is as she embarked on providing quality service. She and her team met standards and even beat project deadlines, and thus earned the trust of Sta. Elena’s clients. True enough, her company lives up to its slogan, going beyond structural integrity.
President & CEO of Sta. Elena Construction & Development Corporation
Alice Eduardo had always wanted to be an engineer. She grew up with an intense fascination on how roads, bridges and buildings are built; how strong foundations are built, and how these man-made structures can help the people in their daily lives. She wanted to be a part of all the processes.
Her dream of becoming an engineer was overthrown by the wish of her parents, particularly her mother, for her to become a doctor or nurse. As a compromise, she took up a management degree.
Alice Eduardo’s family is no stranger to businesses. Growing up, her family juggles rice milling and trading and garments export businesses in Nueva Ecija. Before starting her own construction company, she handled the latter along with her sister, Small. From here, she has been exposed to and learned the ups and downs, the ins and outs of doing business.
Managing the family business paved the way for this mompreneur to start her journey in the construction industry, with her own construction company.
AN OPPORTUNITY CAME IN 1995
In 1995, a customer, Concrete Aggregates, tapped Alice Eduardo to supply steel to a building project in Malolos, Bulacan while she was delivering rice using an elf truck that she drove herself. Acting immediately on the opportunity, she looked for the right materials and delivered them personally to the client.
Right there and then, she knew that this was her first step into the industry she always wanted to partake in: construction.
Bacnotan Steel Plant in Batangas was her first major project. She did the construction of the plant’s foundation. Her next major projects were the Santa Rita and San Lorenzo plants, which are also located in Batangas.
The road to success isn’t always smooth. The Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s happened, and the construction industry was undoubtedly one of the hardest-hit industries. Alice Eduardo had just taken out bank loans to purchase high-end, brand new heavy equipment which she refused to sell at a loss. She made sacrifices so that she can keep her equipment. As the economy recovered, more opportunities came her way.
Henry Sy decided to build one big mall on the reclamation project in Pasay. Very few companies had the adequate and necessary equipment to undertake the construction of the foundation. Unsurprisingly, Sta. Elena won this project.
Soon enough, she and her team were closing large-scale projects from local and international clients. Among others, Sta. Elena’s roster of projects include:
- SM Mall of Asia,
- SM Pampanga,
- SM Bacolod,
- SM Seaside City Mall (Cebu),
- SM City Cabanatuan,
- SM Olongapo City,
- SM City Tarlac,
- SM Bay Arena,
- SM office buildings, One, Two and Three Ecom Center, and
- SMDC residential complexes, Sea Residences, Shell Residences, and Shore Residences.
As if these weren’t enough, investors from all over the world also took notice of the quality of work Sta. Elena is providing. Expectedly, more and bigger projects came its way such as Solaire Resort and Casino, City of Dreams, Belle Grande Casino and Resort and Manila Bay Resort, all of which are located in the Entertainment City in Parañaque.
Further along, Alice Eduardo also won the bid to develop the First Gen-Siemens San Gabriel Power Plant in Batangas also. The natural gas-fired power plant would cost $600 million. This makes Sta. Elena as the first Filipino contractor that Siemens hired to construct its power plant project, solidifying the fact that her construction firm meets international standards.
NOT JUST CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS
Alice Eduardo visits the construction sites personally. However, her life also revolves around advocacy works. Her personal mantra is “If I can save a soul and make people happy, I feel super happy.”
One of her passion projects is the 320-square meter pediatric ward—Department of Pediatrics-Hematology-Oncology Isolation Ward—at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH). Her aim is to build hope for these young cancer patients.
She is also a stalwart partner of Go Negosyo, a program of the Philippine Center for Entrepreneurship that targets the local entrepreneurs. She shares her entrepreneurial journey through summits and conferences. Through talks, she hopes to inspire and ignite more Filipinas in finding their passion and pursuing their dreams. She also offers mentoring sessions to aspiring entrepreneurs.