4 Entrepreneurs Teach You How to Make a Difference By Taking Smart Risks

In today’s business world, playing it safe is not an option. You have to think, decide, and act timely and smartly in order to stay competitive. While it can sometimes be frightening and tricky, these entrepreneurs took the courage to do something out of their comfort zones just to make a difference.   


4 Entrepreneurs Teach You How to Make a Difference By Taking Smart Risks


4. Zark Sumande – Owner of Zark’s Burger

Zark's Burger Team

The Zark’s Team. “I owe Zark’s sauccess to my team”, says Zark, owner of Zark’s Burger (wearing the gear up shirt) 


How he took the risk: Zark took the risk in venturing to business when he decided to invest his savings from his previous jobs to his goal – owning his own business. With his Hotel and Restaurant Management Degree and his 2 years of work experience in a cruise ship, he decided to open a small burger joint at the age of 23. Zark’s Burger initially started as a small burger joint with an approximate area of 25 square meters only.

Zark’s Burger started to expand as the customers embraced their signature burgers. From a small burger joint, Zark’s Burger now have 7 branches around metro manila and is looking forward to expanding to Visayas and Mindanao. What differentiates Zark’s Burgers among the rest is the value for money that they deliver to their customers.

As to Zark, taking the risk is one of the best decision he had done. “Best decision is to take the risk while you’re still young so there’s always an opportunity for you to pull back and learn”.

Before you take the risk: “Make sure that you love and know what you do so you’ll never get bored on what you’re doing. Work with passion, hard work and rapport.”


3. Patrick Garma – Owner of Charaptor Barbecue

Patrick Garma Charaptor Barbecue


How he took the risk: It all started with his cravings for barbecue with a little push from his brother’s ideas. Patrick took the risk of investing his spare money to a small grill restaurant in Kamagong, Makati which is now known as Charaptor Barbecue.

Patrick started Charaptor, a fusion of Korean, Filipino and other International grilled cuisine, from his savings and collections of experiences. Through his hard work and persistence, Charaptor now expanded to another branch in Mall of Asia.

Before you take the risk: “Resist the temptation to splurge. Reinvest your profits. As much as possible, open different bank accounts for your profits and separate it from your personal account. To aspiring entrepreneurs, best advice that I can give is to separate business to your personal expenses.”


2. Mike Mabanta – Luca’s Corner 

Luca's Corner, Mike Mabanta

Owner of Luca’s Corner, Mike Mabanta


How he took the risk: Taking risk is not something new to Mike as he came from a family of restaurateurs with over 20 years existence in the industry.  At the age of 26, he started his own pizza business and named it after his one and only child Lucca.

Started as a home delivery pizza, Mike Mabanta took it slowly before they’ve finally decided to take it bigger and transform it into a restaurant. Luca’s Corner specializes in Homemade Authentic Deep Dish pizza with light consistency.

 Looking back from where he started, Mabanta said that the experiences that he gained over the years had really helped him a lot. “I think experience is the best teacher. To avoid pitfalls, you need to learn from them.”

Before you take the risk: “Be more aggressive and don’t let the idea stay as an idea for too long. Focus on your business and allot more time… You must be hands on. Most especially, use your pitfalls. Learn from your mistakes. If it doesn’t work, take the risk and try something new.” 

Read more about Luca’s Corner here: Deep Dish Pizza by Luca’s Corner: The Perfect Food Delivery Choice


1. Alex Cheng – Owner of Industriya Marikina

Alex Cheng Industriya Marikina

Alfredo Cheng with his daughter Alex Cheng, owner of Industriya Marikina


How she took the risk: Alex Cheng started the idea of putting up a restaurant when she and her dad decided to transform their old shoe factory. Diversifying from their mainstream business, Alex Cheng together with her family opened up Industriya Marikina.

Though tagged as a Filipino brand, Industriya Marikina serves Asian and International cuisines like Japanese, Italian and Filipino food. “We want to cater foods from our shoe industry  journey. We want our customers to experience what we’ve experienced, taste what we’ve tasted when we travel”.

As to their vision, “We want to put an Industrial restaurant in every place that will serve as tribute to very industry in those places. We want to incorporate the food and the restaurant into the industry to help and promote the local industries as well.”

Before you take the risk: “You have to be persistent in learning new business. Don’t settle for what you already know. Like in our case before, on our shoe factory business, all I know is sales, as we just supply shoes. But on a restaurant it’s totally a different ballgame. You need to learn the different dimensions of a restaurant business particularly customer service, the quality of food and the service. That’s my advice to those who want to open up a business, be persistent and never stop learning. Travel more, explore more so you can learn more”.


Great leaders are risk takers. We are not referring to just financial risks. We are pertaining to personal risks or having the willingness to be vulnerable for a bigger return. They inevitably embrace the attitude to take risks as they start or sustain businesses through tough economic/social challenges ahead.  What they risk propels them forward. Today, we thank them for their courage to bring such wonderful brands.


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