500 micro-entrepreneurs were awarded Certificates of Completion for finishing the iSTAR Program in a graduation ceremony held at the TESDA Complex in Taguig City last March 22, 2023.
Launched in 2021, the iSTAR Program is the digital adaptation of the Sari-Sari Store Training and Access to Resources (STAR) Program, an enduring partnership between Coca-Cola Philippines and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), which provides free access to training, resources, and peer mentoring to micro and small business owners to help them grow their businesses. The iSTAR Program has removed the limitations of in-classroom training and diversified its trainees by opening it to existing and start-up micro-retailers of all genders.
Aimed at providing entrepreneurial training, sari-sari store owners and micro-entrepreneurs will be able to enhance their business knowledge such as online selling, inventory control, and planning; and gain access to microloans that will enable them to build their businesses further.
The iSTAR Program is one of the efforts of Coca-Cola Philippines in sustaining the economic empowerment of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the country. For over a decade, Coca-Cola’s initiatives in this area have reached more than 270,000 women entrepreneurs in the retail sector across 17 regions and 81 provinces of the Philippines.