“Success is not an overnight process or an easy money. If you fail, do not be discouraged, instead try again. If you do well, do not change your ways. Success is not just a good luck rather; it is a combination of hard work, good credit standing, opportunity, readiness and timing. Success will not last if you do not take care of it”. This is the favorite quotation of Ms. Bernadette Gordo, owner of Gordo’s General Merchandise which she quoted from Henry Sy, one of the richest businessmen in the Philippines.

     Ms. Gordo is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Gordo. She has two older and three younger siblings. After she graduated from High School, she went to Manila and took up Bachelor of Science major in Computer Science at the Arellano University. During her vacant time, she had partime job at a department storeto cater her educational expenses since their parents cannot provide all her needs. After graduation, she worked at PAG-IBIG Office in Manila for six months and decided to go back to her hometown with a hope to put up her own business.

    Who would have thought that with a very meager capital became one of the biggest and successful stores in the Island of Itbayat, Batanes. It was midyear of 2005 when she decided to borrow a capital of P50, 000 to open her long time plan in putting up a Sari-sari Store. She immediately went to Manila to purchase and went back with a handful of products to be sold. She decided to use their family house as her store to lessen her expense in establishing her business.

    During her first few years in business, she did all the errands because she was not able to hire a helper. After few months, with the small profit she gained, she went back to Manila to purchase more commodities to sell. This cycle happened for more than seven years and eventually hired helpers in the store.

    Back then, her store was made out only of cogon/light materials but because of her determination to succeed, she eventually gained and saved profit, enough to build a more spacious and convenient store. Indeed, these have not been easy for her. Purchasing the commodities to sell was limited because her priority is to procure construction materials for the two-storey one stop shop.

    However, plans were not that smooth when her daughter took her tertiary education, to the fact she was single parent. Just as she thought that her business is in perfect direction, fate tested her determination and resiliency.  

    Early 2015, she almost got paralyzed due to an infection on her left ankle. For almost a year, she was unable to walk and became dependent to a wheelchair. For Ms. Gordo it was the darkest moment of her life that she almost gave up all her hopes and her dream to become a successful entrepreneur. Yet, despite her condition, she had to go on with her life and her business for she has a big responsibility to her daughter- a mindset that kept her optimistic even if odds were against her. This is the reason why she continuously makes her business above par with determination, perseverance and faith in God.

    Today, the construction of the two-storey one stop shop is not yet completely finished although the store is already located at the ground floor started in February this year.

    She believes that profit isn’t that important, it is more on satisfying the customers with quality products and with reasonable prices. This time, the fate of success smiled upon her and for Ms. Gordo, the only way is to go up.