Jollibee distances from politics: Why big brands are mum on poll bets


Posted at Feb 21 2022 12:01 PM

MANILA - The country's largest restaurant operator Jollibee Foods Corp said it is not endorsing any candidate or party for the upcoming May 2022 polls.

The homegrown brand, which is now among the fastest-growing companies in Asia, is instead pushing for a "fair" electoral process, it said in a Tweet. 

"Jollibee Foods Corp and its brands Jollibee, Chowking, Mang Inasal, Greenwich, and Red Ribbon, among others, support a clean and fair election and do not endorse any political party of candidate," it said.

Geiser Maclang co-founder and "brand architect" Amor Maclang earlier told ANC that brands tend to keep silent when it comes to endorsements to protect shareholders from any "negative implications." 

Speaking "as a strategist looking at risk issues and crisis filter," Maclang said “just because you have an opinion doesn’t necessarily mean that you should share that opinion.

“Should you be lucky and if you bet on the right horse, well and good but if you didn’t? What would be the implication of such choices to your stakeholders in general,” she added. 

The opinion of the owner also does not necessarily "determine the entirety" of the company, she added.

Among the strongest presidential bets in the upcoming May 2022 elections are former senator Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos Jr, Vice President Leni Robredo, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno, Senator Panfilo Ping Lacson and boxing champ Senator Manny Pacquiao.

Historically, candidates aim for the support of vote-rich sectors such as religious groups. 

JFC's Tweet which was posted over the weekend has so far garnered some 35,000 reactions and over 1,900 replies.

Netizens were quick to point out it was the right decision to remain "neutral" as a corporation with thousands of workers with "differences in political beliefs."

Individual officers, meanwhile, are entitled to their own decisions, a Twitter user said. 

"You can't force JFC as a corporation to endorse a candidate...But you can always ask the stand of each of its board of directors & executives as an individual citizen," a Twitter user said.

Meanwhile, some groups, former government officials and even economists have signified their support for some presidential candidates. 


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