From 2007 to 2016, Divon was with Google where he was responsible for Frontier Markets and focused on extending Google's infrastructure, products and programs to reach people in developing countries throughout Asia and Africa, on the one hand, and on the other hand he worked on the ground in 50+ developing countries to help grow and empower the local technology ecosystems in these countries.
Divon is also the Managing Director of Black Paw Ventures, a startup foundry focused on emerging markets. At Black Paw Ventures, Divon focuses on building and/or supporting startup teams, based in developing countries in Asia and Africa, focused on internationally-scalable, mass-market mobile applications. YYY is Black Paw Ventures' flagship project.
Divon holds an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania - Wharton and a B.Sc. in Computer Science from the Technion Israel institute of technology.
Albert is the Philippines’ first Google Developer Expert and specializes in the Google Cloud Platform. Since 2008, he has architected and developed solutions for local and international organizations like the Office of the President of the Philippines and The World Bank.
Albert is passionate about empowering startups and has been involved in the Philippine Startup Ecosystem, by facilitating growth in the developing community since 2012. Due to his involvement in the community, Albert has worked closely with national government agencies as a consultant to combine efforts and maximize impact.
Prior to that, Albert started SpellDial, directed plays, and mentored street children. He studied Information Technology at the Centre for International Education Global Colleges. He lives in Cebu City, Philippines with his wife. His interests include theatre, performing arts, and the non-trivial act of eradicating poverty.
In 2010 Dave founded Symph – a design, development and digital marketing company. He led the company as the CEO and focused specifically on development of client partnerships and business development of in-house startups.
Prior to starting Symph, he was the Chief Information Officer at Bigfoot – a media and entertainment company – where he oversaw the company's technology development to revolutionize the media industry by establishing itself as an entertainment pioneer in the emerging SouthEast Asian Market.
Dave originally came to the Philippines in 2003 and, together with his wife, founded a non-profit organization that continues to provide high quality maternity care to those living at the margins of society. His education in international development helped the organization scale from a husband and wife team to a 24/7 operation with over 45 team members. Standing at the intersection of technology and international development, he is passionate about developing startups that shape the future of the emerging market.
Dave holds a BA in International Economics from San Diego State University.
Hailing from the University of Cebu as a graduate of their Information Technology program, Jermaine has been a source of diligence and consistency in the company. As a talented young Android developer, he has contributed his skills, passion, and perseverance to Tudlo, a Philippines-based disaster preparedness and response mobile startup, and has continually been a valuable asset to all his teams.
In his down time, Jermaine enjoys jamming on the guitar with his friends and relaxing with a good view and a bottle of beer.
With a big smile and an even bigger heart, Shad is the community's guy. He has founded two startups in the past: Shiftre, a platform that enables public transportation vehicles in the Philippines (jeepneys) to display adds to their passengers, and TeeVee, a t-shirt vending machine designed for large, city-wide events.
He graduated as a web developer and found a passion in the technology community.
In his spare time, Shad leads the Google Developers Group Cebu as it's Community Lead.
Having been raised and educated in parts of Europe, Asia and North America, Carmela, a 50 year-old mother of five, likes to call herself a citizen of the Earth. She taught herself the Filipino language at 8 by reading local comics and binge watching black and white Sampaguita and LVN films. A mother before anything else, she saw it important to take care of her family and concentrate on raising her children first.
Carmela had worked with the Learning and Development team of HSBC in 2005. She started coaching English in 2008 to European professionals from France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Lithuania, Poland and Russia. 2014 saw her coaching English to Engineering students from Thai Nguyen, Vietnam.
With her children grown and independent, she is able to take to the road more and had recently lived by the beach while writing. She presently teaches, translates, writes books, as well as online/marketing content. A certified tree-hugger and hippie at heart whose constant companion is music, she is most comfortable when barefeet, and happiest when good music blares from her speakers. Carmela is on the perpetual pursuit of something to smile about.
Flown right out of Cebu City just a couple of months after her birth, Rafelle was raised in Hong Kong for the first 8 years of her life, with the next 10 years in Macau. This meant she was useless in Tagalog and Bisaya. With an architect for a father, she’s always had great interest in design. And with a mother who introduced her into the world of books at an early age, she also grew up reading and enjoying said activity a lot.
Torn between design and writing, she initially took up architecture. But after a short foray into the design and construction industry via a summer internship program, she realized it might not have been her calling. After her and her family moved back to the Philippines, she enrolled into the University of the Philippines Cebu’s Mass Communication programme.
Despite leaving the world of architecture, design just hasn’t left her quite yet and she still dabbles in it. At the same time, she’s also working on enhancing her writing and really wants to be a published author one day. IF she ever gets around to actually writing more than 2 pages before procrastination smacks her in the head.
Hardworking and willing to endure for her family – especially her two younger siblings, Jocelyn is definitely a loving and caring daughter to her parents.
This singer and volleyball player is currently one of YYY's team members dedicated to Customer Happiness, ensuring that there's communication with the client and that jobs are published – they make sure things are running smoothly.
Jolly and cheerful, Maricres dreams of one day owning her own business and becoming a successful entrepreneur.
Currently, this positive thinking individual is one of YYY's team members dedicated to Customer Happiness, ensuring that there's communication with the client and that jobs are published – they make sure things are running smoothly.
One of three Bachelor of Science in Information Technology interns from Southern Leyte's College of Maasin, Jana enjoys dancing and is a great dog lover.
This ever-smiling individual is one of YYY's team members dedicated to Customer Happiness, ensuring that there's communication with the client and that jobs are published – they make sure things are running smoothly.
One of three Bachelor of Science in Information Technology interns from Southern Leyte’s College of Maasin, Junel is passionate about DOTA and Mobile Legends, as well as dancing.
He is one of YYY's team members dedicated to Customer Happiness, ensuring that there's communication with the client and that jobs are published – they make sure things are running smoothly.
Kai joins YYY Cambodia as a Managing Director. Currently operating a heavy machinery service company in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, he has been involved in Cambodia's business community for 8 years working on a variety of projects as a business developer. Prior to YYY, Kai managed a start-up accelerator supported by a Korean government agency called KOTRA, and also advised business investors from Korea to Cambodia.
Kai holds a B.S. with a major in Business Administration, and a minor in Applied Mathematics from Pepperdine University.
Somdara Piseth joins YYY Cambodia as a Marketing and Sales Manager. He has experience working in start-up companies developing sales tactics, and also as a computer science teacher.
Pior to joining YYY Cambodia, Somdara Piseth had been working as a Marketing and Sales Manager for a Korean technology company. He is also a local programmer, web designer, and English/Khmer translator during his free time. Piseth is passionate about technology and its usage to transform the livelihood of Cambodians. Piseth holds a B.S. degree in information Technology from the Royal University of Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Arth has been passionate about development since his student years. This passion led to the founding of his former startup, Sidelines - a platform that connects companies to job-seeking students through teacher recommendations. From the lessons he learned as a former startup founder, he brings his endurance and skill to this team.
Aside from being an all-around developer, Arth enjoys playing video games and binge-watching Game of Thrones.
Ashley lives and breathes for technology and startups. She works to empower Startup Weekend communities and innovation cultures in the different provinces within the Philippines as both an organizer and facilitator. She currently involves herself in events that aim to elevate startups in the Philippines like Geeks On A Beach and serves as a connector for the national community through her work with non-profit organizations like TechTalks.ph, MakeSense, and local startup accelerator, Ideaspace.
Ashley spearheads events, encourages collaboration, and facilitates the development of leaders, communities, and products. Despite being constantly on the move, she still manages to keep tabs on pop-culture trends, online games, and living the life on The Sims.
In 2013, Dan partnered with Dave and Albert, where he designed and developed websites and mobile apps for internal startups and clients such as 500 Startups, The World Bank and the Office of the President of the Philippines.
Self-taught and design driven, Dan officially started his design career a few months after dropping out of nursing school. He taught himself how to do digital design and front-end coding, he then started freelance design work for various local and international companies.
He is in the pursuit of seeking ways to leave a legacy in the community and when Dan is not too busy creating beautiful things, he teaches himself the ways of being a cat person.
As the co-founder of Young Heroes for Cebu, a non-profit student organization that aims to empower the youth to speak up about and understand social issues, Danica has a lot to give.
Working as a teacher, and then working in the government that she hopes to help improve, Danica has the persistence and tenacity needed to work hard and solve problems at it's roots.
In the morning, Danica enjoys a conversation over coffee on life, love, and politics.
Chip is an Android developer that loves his code just as much as he loves his garden. Having background in mobile development since 2011, he has worked with and for international organizations like Drumbi and Ameeratel in creating great mobile products. Chip enjoys enthusing about his interests in rom customizations, Unbuntu, and other Linux flavors while he tries his hand at cryptography and giving back to the community by speaking at Google Developer Group meetups on the side.
Chip takes on roles such as lead mobile developer, mentor, and watermelon-eating friend.
With a strong will and the thirst to learn, Kenneth taught himself Android and Web Development as he started working as a freelancer. He then went on to create great products with startups such as Shiftre, a platform that enables location-based ads in public transport, and GoHuddle, a gamified social interactions mobile app. Kenneth spends his spare time discovering new techniques in coding and applies them by creating his own ORM in PHP and custom APIs.
He actively participates in Google Developers Group meetups and is a strong advocate of experiential learning.
With his passion for software development, Raniel was once a part of the game development company Gamecircus, the company behind some of the most popular mobile games in the world. In Gamecircus, he was called "the explorer" because he explores the software throughout, constantly taking all the testing challenges in the search for bugs.
Raniel is also one of the founders of a motorist organization based in Cebu City. Because of his love for the community and his hopes of making it a better place for the people belonging to it, he travels to provinces around the Philipines to conduct charity work.
One of three Bachelor of Science in Information Technology interns from Southern Leyte’s College of Maasin, Abdullah is a dancer and an avid gamer.
He is a former YYY team member that was dedicated to Customer Happiness that ensured there's communication with the client and that jobs were published.
Black Paw Ventures is a startup foundry focused on emerging markets.
We help build and/or support startup teams, based in developing countries in Asia and Africa. We are focused exclusively on mobile-phone apps for people in developing countries, which we call "boundary users". These are the 1 billion or so people who have just recently started using a smartphone as their first computing device in their life, or will soon start to. These new users are fundamentally different from the world's first 2 billion smartphone users: their metaphors, associations, (lack of) previous experience with technology, Internet access patterns, language skills and income levels, require radically different thinking about application design even for the most mundane and well established app verticals.
We are interested in projects that have the potential, if successful, to scale to the 100+ developing countries globally, and that could potentially be used by hundreds of millions of users. We are focused on helping create for-profit technology startups, but we also need to be convinced that each of our projects has a positive impact on society.
Symph started in 2010 by providing technology solutions to small businesses.
Our work focused on digital marketing and website creation. We built our solution portfolio and continued to assist clients by creating beautiful and functional websites and impactful digital marketing campaigns. The company continued its growth by enabling customer’s success and their word of mouth opened doors to take on bigger clients, projects and challenges. This opportunity allowed us to create innovative solutions that stretch and flex to appropriately solve problems and interact with what the client truly needs. Part of our ethos is that we love to build products that people love to use!
Born from this desire to create beautiful and functional products, our drive to create such solutions for those in need grew. We wanted to make an impact in the lives of millions that needed the support, opportunity, and empowerment that wasn't easy to come by. The company started creating in-house startups that bloomed from the ideas of it's team. From online payment platforms that cater to the middle to lower class, to apps that facilitate the disaster-relief process in critical areas, we've given it our all to not only create products that are sustainable but to also make and impact and help change the world for the better.