First OFW technopreneur to launch software dev’t enterprises – DOST

Published May 2, 2021, 8:41 AM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

A former overseas Filipino worker will launch his own software development enterprises through the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) Innovations for Filipinos Working Distantly from the Philippines (iFWD PH).

DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said the DOST-National Capital Region (NCR) provided more than P200,000 to Ruel Bermudez of the Bermudez Software Labs for the acquisition of hardware, cloud hosting subscription, and vulnerability assessment and penetration testing for the development of the eBarangayPH System.

DOST (Manila Bulletin File Photo)

“After approving the first project for the Innovation Funding Phase of the Innovations for Filipinos Working Distantly from the Philippines (iFWD PH) Program, the DOST NCR held a virtual fund release for the Bermudez Software Labs owned by former OFW Ruel Bermudez marking the start of his project under the second phase of DOST’s iFWD PH program,” he said during his weekly report on Friday, April 30.

The Bermudez Software Labs was provided with a total innovation funding amounting to P210,329,” he said.

iFWD PH program provides support and opportunities for OFWs and their families to establish technology-based enterprises in the country through trainings and webinar sessions including technology pitching and technical consultancies.

De la Peña said Bermudez’s counterpart covers web development, marketing and trainings, and rent and utility expenses.

“The eBarangayPH will merge usual individual information systems into one including comprehensive resident, household, certificate, and crisis management systems. Being cloud-based, the data may be interconnected, verifiable, and downloadable,” he said.

The Bermudez Software Labs has already created a website for eBarangayPH as one of its marketing activities which can be found at, the DOST chief said.

“Currently, the system is hosted in a shared server with high-end specifications. The company plans to migrate this to a dedicated server to accommodate high throughput and concurrencies, alongside the development of a mobile application for both android and iOS users.”

De la Peña said a technology-based enterprise advisor (TBEA), who was also an expert in developing management information systems, will also be assigned to provide technical assistance for Bermudez’s starting company.

Bermudez worked as an information technology (IT) project manager for 10 years and senior web developer for 20 years in Cambodia. He was repatriated in 2020.

“He plans to stay in the Philippines for good to manage the Bermudez Software Labs,” the DOST chief said.

Mr. Bermudez applied to the iFWD PH Program as part of the first batch in 2020.

Under the iFWD PH program, those who can complete the training will be qualified to apply for an innovation fund for technical trainings, product development and market testing, operational consultancy services, initial laboratory testing, packaging and labeling design and execution for market testing, and equipment acquisition.