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In Philippines, Mynimo carves a niche despite mighty Jobstreet

Chances are, if you’re a job seeker or employer in Southeast Asia, you would know Jobstreet.com. A leading online recruitment site in the region, the Malaysian company expanded to the Philippines in 1999. And that was before the Dotcom Crash.

Yet, Mynimo, a relatively new job recruitment site, has managed to carve a niche in Cebu, a province in the Philippines.

Founded by Filipino Wesley Chiongbian in 2007, two years after Jobstreet’s entry to Cebu, Mynimo has managed to withstand the tide from its more well-financed rival, establishing itself as a leading recruitment portal in the province.

“Thanks to serious bootstrapping, like using my home as our office, a very supportive local market, and a lot of luck,” he says.

The luck portion occured when the company was not able to launch in 2006 due to technical issues. Then an earthquake hit Taiwan late that year, which disrupted Internet connections in the Philippines.

“If we launched as scheduled, our business would have been seriously affected,” he says.

Today, the site registers over 100,000 pageviews a day, mostly from jobseekers based in Cebu. It currently hosts over 800 jobs and serves between 250 to 300 companies a month.

These are strong figures considering the low but growing Internet penetration rate in the country, which stands at 45 percent. Cebu has around 3.85 million people.

Wesley says it is the highest-ranking, 100 percent Filipino-owned jobs site listing primarily Philippine-based jobs, according to Alexa. The company was already recouping its initial investment after two years.

Mynimo’s main selling point is its affordability and effectiveness compared to traditional classifieds advertising on newspapers in Cebu.   The site has an uncluttered look, making it easy for jobseekers to find work and for employers to post them. It generates revenue from advertising.

Moving forward, Wesley still sees a lot of opportunities for expansion in the province. Once they consolidate the market, they will consider growing to other areas.

Who knows, it might even become an acquisition target for Jobstreet.com or Jobsdb.



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