UST confers honorary doctorate on Jollibee founder

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Photo by Vladlynn Nona Maryse L. Tadeo

THE UNIVERSITY conferred on Thursday an honorary doctorate in business administration, honoris causa, on Jollibee Foods Corp. founder Tony Tan Caktiong for his outstanding contribution to the economy and business.

Tan Caktiong, 65, graduated from the University in 1975 with a degree in chemical engineering.

In an interview with the Varsitarian, Tan Caktiong credited his Thomasian education for his success in the food industry.

“I took up engineering [in UST], so there was a lot of analytical activities — how to analyze a problem, a program, so I think it helped in terms of the business,” he said.

UST Rector Fr. Herminio Dagohoy, O.P. said Tan Caktiong made a mark through his leadership and social responsibility.

“[W]e are conferring the honorary degree on Mr. Tony Tan Caktiong not just because of his achievements with the Jollibee corporation but also for keeping a premium on education and for his invaluable contribution to nation-building,” Dagohoy said in his introductory speech.

In 1978, Tan Caktiong established an ice cream parlor that became Jollibee, now the world’s fastest-growing Asian restaurant chain with almost 4,000 stores in 17 countries across the globe.

Jollibee is also the country’s largest fast food network and owns the brands Chowking, Greenwich, Red Ribbon, Mang Inasal and the local Burger King franchise.

In 2004, Tan Caktiong was named “World Entrepreneur of the Year” by London-based professional services firm Ernst & Young.

Tan Caktiong was named eighth richest man in the Philippines by Forbes Magazine in 2017.

Throughout the University’s history, only 77 individuals have been given honorary doctorates, including the late Manila archbishop Jaime Cardinal Sin, former president Corazon Aquino, Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. founder George Ty, and Mercury Drug founder Mariano Que. With reports from Jacob Marvin D. Urmenita

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