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.
"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."
Apa also noted that his uncle "He "never retired, and remained sharp and undiminished by age, all the way to his last day." One additional trivia he shared was how both brothers, Roberto and Jaime, supported many full scholarships for Ateneo de Manila University students. Both of them finished Ateneo and Harvard on scholarships as well.
He ends the post that the remains will be brought back to Manila and to wait for further announcements.
Roberto Velayo Ongpin was born Jan. 6, 1937, and is survived by his wife, Monica Arellano and children Stephen, Anna, Michelle, and Julian. He has four grandchildren as well.