Entrepreneur Hiyasmin Neri-Soyao Is Transforming The Philippines' E-Commerce Industry With Live Shopping
The co-founder and CEO of Shoppertainment Live on leaving her TV hosting job to become an entrepreneur
In the What Matters To Me series, a Generation T honouree describes what they do, why they do it, and why it matters.
Hiyasmin Neri-Soyao follows her curiosity, which took her from hosting a TV shopping channel to producing and managing her own. Her company, Shoppertainment Live, is the Philippines’ first full-production livestreaming agency. The company enables big advertising agencies, multinational companies and e-commerce giants to sell their products, working with more than 90 brands and recently expanded its studios to an 11,000 sqft space—all without any external investment.
Neri-Soyao says her mission for Shoppertainment Live is "to create more jobs and opportunities for media professionals and, ultimately, help people shop smarter through information and video entertainment." Here, she shares more about her work and passions in her own words.
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I was a shop host before I became a CEO. I was managed by ABS-CBN as an on-camera talent, but always had a fascination for the business side of media and how the network worked. So I interned, became a producer and took my MBA to understand how businesses work. I eventually landed a managerial job at the same TV network, before starting Shoppertainment Live in 2019.
Shoppertainment Live was started in a makeshift studio. We just had a cloth background, a couple of cameras and second-hand lights set up at one of the chat service offices that my business partner Steve Sy owned. Before our first two employees were hired, I was hosting, producing and managing our accounts.
The best piece of advice I've ever received is "don't hold back from selling something no one has tried before. Create a minimum viable product and ways to educate your market. They'll see your worth."
One of my favourite quotes comes from the 2015 movie, Joy. It tells the story of a successful woman named Joy Mangano, who, despite experiencing betrayals and family struggles, kept chasing her dreams to become an inventor of home products. The quote that I love goes: “The only thing you're gonna have is what you make.” This, to me, says that we shouldn't hold back on our entrepreneurial dreams, even if we experience failures. Instead, we should rely on our creative instincts, find our market and make our dream happen.