Blood Type RSA: Ramon Ang Leads Blood Drive as San Miguel Corp Celebrates 130th Anniversary
There is a reason why Ramon Ang is on top of his game, even during this time of the pandemic. Since March, when community quarantine restrictions were implemented across the country, the country’s eighth richest man according to Forbes has led the San Miguel Corp conglomerate response to help mitigate the impact of COVID-19. Out of the over P13 billion the company spent on COVID-19 efforts, P500 million was used to purchase personal protective equipment (PPEs) and various life-saving medical equipment. It also donated testing booths and kits to Metro Manila LGUs.
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Despite a large drop in his fortune, and aside from the corporate resources from SMC, Ang also set aside P100 million from his personal wealth last April to add to SMC’s fight against the pandemic (link here)
Ang’s personal wealth, which is now valued at $2billion based on Forbes’ real time estimates, is now just a notch below Lucio Tan ($2.2billion). His personal wealth reportedly dropped last September 2019 from $2.8 billion by about $800 million.
Ang was brought into San Miguel by the late Eduardo “Danding” Cojuanco, who was the Chairman Emeritus of SMC. The business mogul discovered Ang through his son Mark Cojuangco and made him his protégé.
On its 130th anniversary, San Miguel Corporation (SMC) launched a quarterly blood and convalescent plasma donation drive across its facilities nationwide. SMC is the first private company in the country to undertake such an initiative with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC). Ang has on numerous occasions aired his frustration on how other big companies are slow to respond to the nation’s call to fight the pandemic.
Blood Type RSA
The tycoon himself also gave some of his own blood. It is probably one of the most expensive blood you can find in this country.
“Fewer people are donating blood since the pandemic started to date, yet there is a growing demand for blood to be able to perform transfusions needed in emergent cases. I can’t think of a more meaningful way to mark San Miguel’s 130th anniversary than to help replenish the Philippine Red Cross’ blood bank. While we’re still dealing with a pandemic, many more non-COVID-19 patients are in need of blood to get the care they need,” Ang said.
According to PRC, blood donations are commonly used in the treatment of cancer patients, accident victims, and people with blood disorders. And with the dengue season also set in, its blood reserves also plays a vital role in treating dengue patients.
Drawing first blood
Ang donated blood simultaneously with PRC Chairman and CEO Senator Richard Gordon, in their respective offices. The event was participated in by over 400 SMC employees.
“We just want to help in any way we can. This is a San Miguel group-wide effort that we will do every quarter. Our employees across the country are encouraged to donate. I believe, together, we can all make a difference,” Ang added.
Meanwhile, extracting convalescent plasma from a person who has recovered from COVID-19, then transfusing it into a patient still battling the virus, has proven to be a valuable alternative therapy. People who have recovered from COVID-19 and who volunteer to donate convalescent plasma have a unique ability to help up to three patients currently suffering from the virus.
“We feel very honored to be supporting and collaborating with the Philippine Red Cross and Senator Richard Gordon on their efforts to help not just COVID-19 patients but also the many other patients who require blood for various purposes. We hope that through this partnership we can contribute to efforts to save lives,” said Ang.
The drive was launched simultaneously via ZOOM in six different SMC facilities around the country. Among these were the Purefoods Hormel Plant in General Trias, Cavite; the Manila Toll Expressway Systems, Inc. facility in Silangan, Laguna; San Miguel Brewery’s community clinics in San Fernando, Pampanga, Mandaue, Cebu, and Sta. Cruz, Davao Del Sur; and the SMC Head Office Complex in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila.
“We also want to help address the stigma of testing positive for COVID-19. As we’ve seen, anyone can contract the virus. When you treat someone like an outcast just because they’ve contracted the virus, you not only treat that person unfairly, you make it less likely for people to come forward and test, or quarantine. I hope our employees who have recovered will donate plasma and see this as an opportunity to help others who are still fighting it,” said Ang.