Roberto Ongpin, Filipino businessman, passes away at 86

His nephew, Apa Ongpin, shares personal announcement

In a Facebook post by Apa Ongpin earlier today, he shared the news that his uncle, Roberto Velayo Ongpin had passed away in his sleep last night, Feb. 4, in Balesin Island. He was the chairman of Alphaland Corporation.

Photo credit from Alphaland Corporation

"My Uncle Bobby died. This is a personal announcement, not the family’s official announcement, which will be made when wake details have been decided," he started. "A cum laude graduate of Ateneo de Manila and an MBA from Harvard Business School, he led SyCip Gorres and Velayo to become Asia’s largest accounting firm, and served from 1979 to 1986 as the youngest Minister for Trade and Industry, during which he made many contributions to the development of the country, as well as defended the currency in the wake of the 1983 financial crisis. After leaving government, he built and rebuilt empires, including making the deals that brought the Shangri-La Group into the Philippines, Tagaytay Highlands, PhilWeb, and culminating in Alphaland Corporation, where he built his crown jewel, Alphaland Balesin Island Club. He has been expanding to the neighboring island of Patnanungan, which he planned to formally open this year."