By Marivir R. Montebon
In New York, the number of women-owned startups rose to 58% between 1997 and 2010, compared to 50% national figures. The empire state ranks among the Top 10 states for women entrepreneurs. Asian women entrepreneurs, in particular, have shown vigor in the field of business.
OSM! features three of these highly motivated business women. Hui-Man “Chow” Mok of upper west side’s Zen Medica, Eileen Formanes of Bibingka-esk in Bayside, and Manhattan’s Imogene Raypon, make-up artist for healthy beauty – the Green Option for Glam.
HUI-MAN “CHOW” MOK – Believer of Holistic Health at Zen Medica
Chow is a young entrepreneur, in her early 30s, and relentless in setting up her Zen Medica which offers a wide array of natural health and beauty supplements. Business has been brisk since she opened her shop on 72nd Street on the upper west side of Manhattan.
“Getting into holistic health is a new consciousness. The traditional chemical-based pharmaceuticals is not providing a long-term solution to health. I understand people will eventually shift to more healthy options,” she said optimistically.
Chow’s parents come from Hongkong and have since settled in the US when she was a young child. She finished Nutrition and Dietetics and had since worked along the line of her academic course. Two year ago, she decided to set up her own business and there was no stopping her since then, whether it was high competition or rigorous business regulations.
Towards the end of summer, Zen Medica spearheaded a holistic health fair at the Jewish Community Center on Amsterdam to promote organic health supplements to the community. That was a huge success, accounting for more walk-ins into the shop and online shopping. Zen Medica also conducts health seminars regularly.
Chow may be always tired at the end of the day, but she always ends it with a smile, looking at her daily achievements.
EILEEN FORMANES – Baking Bibingka for the World to Sample
At an international day celebration of the company she formerly works for, Eileen was prodded by her friends who tasted her bibingka (a uniquely Filipino milk and rice cake) to begin selling the incredibly tasty pastry. The demand inspired her to open business in March this year, with the brand name Bibingka-esk.
Eileen’s original bibingka now comes in different flavors: S’mores, Peanut Butter with Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Strawberry, Cinnamon Sugar, Strawberry Swirl, Blueberry, Apple Pie, and Banana.
One can sample on the Bibingka-esk at the LIC Holiday Market on Long Island City for the entire month of December.
IMOGENE RAYPON – Healthy Glam for You
Imogene is a make-up artist by profession who uses healthy make-up products to ensure the lasting, healthful beauty of her clients.
She finished her make-up course at the Chistine Valmy International School and has worked in various high end retail outlets in the city, particularly Saks 5th Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdale’s and Henri Bendel.
Now as an independent consultant, Imogene has chartered her own business by choosing products that are truly healthy and helpful to clients.
On December 7, she will hold a make-up seminar titled “The Green Option to Glam and Fab” at the Payag Cellar through the Pinoy Pride sa America from 10am to noon. A $45 fee includes kit, make up products, and breakfast.