#ChinoyProfiles: Emelda and Eric Teng on Being Business and Life Partners

By Queencee Colleen Quitalig 13 May, 2017


It's so easy to call a couple #relationshipgoals-worthy these days. They're taking over the internet, posting their adventure snaps with matching cheesy captions to declare how in love they are. And, without a second thought, we double tap their posts, wishing we're living in the same fairytale. But when is a couple worthy of the famed hashtag, really?

We bet Eric and Emelda Teng's story can give the answer. From making a relationship work and building a family, to conquering the world of business hand-in-hand, this couple surely knows how to do things right. Love, besides, is not in the 640:640 squares we mindlessly "like" on the daily, but is out there making things happen. 

Eric and Emelda got married in 1990. With their dream to make a name in the world of business, the couple was astounded when, instead of opportunities, they faced loss. They didn't know, however, that losing this great sum of money would be a blessing-in-disguise that will launch them to a roster of businesses. 

Eric: We lost one of our bags that contained a lot of her collection and, of course, that was hard-earned money. So, we had to put our heads together and try to come up with ideas.

Imelda: When we visited the US, we saw a concept store which was a dollar store. That's where we got the idea of opening up a 99-peso store.

Eric: Then, she wanted to branch out. She needed help sa marketing side when we started to expand it as a chain. Pretty soon, we had a lot of 99-peso stores. 


From their humble beginning with 99-peso stores, the couple eventually found ways to expand. Through their support and respect for each other's dreams and ideas, their relationship strengthened as their businesses flourished.

Eric: She loves fashion business more, I think. And I like the food business more. 

Imelda: Ang business, may challenge talaga. But we have already seen the coming of these new brands. So, we anticipated it. That's why we diversify also into FnB. And, everyday, as you see yung mga challenge na pumapasok. Like the global brands coming in, parang you tend to challenge yourself also. You ask yourself, 'Ano ba 'yung strength mo?' So, you go towards that direction naman also. 

Eric: Maldita came about because the opportunity sa market was also expanding. And it led to other retail brands like epse, which is a Malaysian franchise that started two years ago. And we ventured into the restaurant business five years ago. It was just an accident. We met a few people, not really knowing that it would turn out that way. And it led to the mango tree franchise for us, which led to the coca franchise which eventually led to Slappy Cakes. As we enjoy everything that we do, we also like creating our own brands that can be relevant to the local market, and so we decided to come up with Cocina Peruvia.

Truly, this couple is unstoppable. Despite everything they have achieved, however, they stay up for challenges that lead them to improvement.

Eric: Nothing is perfect. Life, business, marriage, is all about challenges and working together. I'd say I'm enjoying growing older with her now because we've learned so much. 

Imelda: Ako, parang everything is a challenge naman. But when the problems come, there's always an opportunity for you to learn. Para sakin, parang the best teacher are my last mistakes. 

When asked about how they balance their roles in their businesses with their roles at home, Eric Teng shares that he doesn't actually treat the two as separate from each other. 

Eric: Well, it's like a normal household―husband and wife. They ask each other about their day. Sometimes, we go home upset, sometimes very stressed, but I would say, most of the time, we go home happy. Especially because the kids are there―nakaka-tanggal ng pagod. And we know that, ultimately, that's what we're working hard for―the children.

For me, personally, I don't think about separating it. For me, it's just a part of my daily life. I don't complain about it. 

 He nonetheless added that seeing satisfied customers and a satisfied family bring different kinds of fulfillment. He, then, pointed out later that these are anchored on making his wife happy, proving true that popular saying which goes, "Happy wife, happy life". 

Eric: I don't want to see her unhappy. So, I guess, I want to always try to do what I can for her to be happy. I can't find a better partner than her, let me put it that way. I can't find a better wife than her. My children can't have a better mother than her. So, maybe, that's the easy part. How we go on, day to day, when you have a good team, going through all those problems is a lot easier. 

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Last modified on Monday, 22 May 2017 12:08

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