Humans of Weremote: iCore Technologies

The Humans of Weremote series features an individual, a group, or an organization that is a valuable member of the Weremote community so that we may get to know them a little better. This would include their business or work philosophy and why working at Weremote makes sense to them.

iCore Technologies started as a small company offering IT services, focusing on digitalization and financial technology. Its two main core competencies are services and software.

As a startup, iCore found it difficult to handle growing the business and the administrative tasks, until they set up their office in Weremote Ortigas. There they discovered the perfect partner to grow their business as most of the administrative tasks fell within the Weremote services they signed up for. Free from that burden, iCore Technologies was able to focus on what matters most: expanding their products and services and growing their clientele.

Along the way, they also found a good measure of work-life balance, thanks to Weremote’s amenities that allowed members to find relaxation in the middle of a frenzied workday.

Get a glimpse of iCore Technologies’ journey through the eyes of its CEO, Lorenzo Valdez, and its officers for administration and business development, respectively, AJ Abainza and Rudy Mandap in this short but interesting Q&A.

Weremote (WR): Could you tell us a bit about your role at iCore Technologies and also about the company?ee

Lorenzo Valdez (LV): I started as an individual consultant. [iCore Technologies] started as just a small company for IT services. We then expanded into software development, consulting. Basically, iCore Technologies is an IT service provider, focused on digitalization and financial technology. We have services and then we have software. For services we do consulting, outsourcing, dev ops, and cloud management. For software we have payment gateways, remittance platforms, digital wallets for core banking, loan management. We also have ERP for accounting, warehousing inventory. So basically, we wanted to be the go-to company for any IT-related requirements by different organizations.

Lorenzo Valdez, CEO

WR: What initially drew you to build/work at iCore Technologies?

LV: It’s a gamble. I was already 40-ish when we started iCore Technologies. I really wanted to have my own company, to have my own business. I’m looking at the future for my kids as well, if I stay in the corporate world or have my own company. I started basically as Employee 001, and we just had one client. Later we were able to close some projects—from consulting to software development. And then we came up with our own platform and products. That’s when we got more projects.

WR: What factors influenced your decision to choose Weremote Ortigas for your office’s location?

LV: When we started iCore technologies, it was difficult for me to maintain both the business and the admin side. That’s when I decided to look for something like Weremote that can allow me to focus on the business side. Weremote has been very helpful in letting me focus on the other things and then help me on the admin side like registration.

You know I used to bring my mother with me to BIR to help me ‘cause I’m not really [into admin tasks]. So my mother helped me on the accounting and registration sides. When I went to Weremote, they helped me on the admin side and so we were able to focus on what was really needed, especially at the time were just a startup company where we have to put on multiple hats. I even did the collections for the company. During covid, maintaining the office was really difficult. But Weremote was there, and we were able to survive that period and right now we are starting to grow together with Weremote.

WR: Have any particular features of Weremote impacted your business operations or team dynamics positively?

LV: The staff, the environment. When our clients go to Weremote, [the WR staff] are very accommodating. They help us in everything like booking; if we need some food delivered, they help us. Our partners and clients appreciate this setup. Yesterday, we had some guests from government and they were very interested in how this thing [with Weremote] works.

WR: What piece of advice would iCore Technologies give to businesses considering a move to a coworking space like Weremote?

LV: If you want to start a company, you would like to [consider] this option instead of getting a dedicated office. It will really allow you to focus on your business. You will have flexibility since Weremote has different offices. So, if you have a meeting in BGC, you can book a space in Weremote there. In the admin side, the tasks that you don’t have to do, you can ask Weremote to do them for you.

WR: What’s one aspect of your job that excites you most?

AJ Abainza (AA): There has been a lot of improvements within the company, different learning opportunities. Also, the different issues that confront the company. Lastly, there’s lots of room for improvement for us as individuals. What excites me the most is when we present our products to huge companies. We know there are a lot of competition especially in fintech technology, but we have our own software and programs that we can offer to banks and other financial institutions as well as hotels, restaurants, and schools.

AJ Abainza, Administration

WR: How would you describe the culture within iCore Technologies?How

AA: You can describe it in one word: healthy. It’s easier to work when you have a healthy work environment. Before the pandemic, we were in one physical office, but then after the pandemic, not everyone returned to the office. But we have managed to keep communication lines open, which help us serve our clients consistently.

WR: How does your office at Weremote contribute to your company’s collaborative and innovative culture?

AA: For me, I highly recommend Weremote for startups and even those businesses that have been existing for quite some time. Our office here, while not that spacious, is very conducive to productivity and is so comfortable. It’s a big factor on why iCore Technologies is able to serve its clients well. The staff here is also very accommodating.

WR: Does your team have a favorite spot in Weremote?

AA: Personally, a location that has a great comfort room will always be a great place. Like it’s clean, smells nice, and has my number one requirement—a bidet. I also like here in Weremote the lounge and pantry that is cool and so, eating there is always comfortable. Also, there’s free coffee!

WR: Do you go for any recreational activity, like table tennis?

AA: Yes, I was a player before. Good thing that we have it here in Weremote so there’s some kind of work-life balance. You’re not expected to spend all your time working. You need some kind of break to refresh yourself so you can be productive again.

WR: How is being at Weremote open up networking opportunities and community connections for iCore Technologies?

AA: Being at Weremote, we are able to meet other companies, other professionals, and networking with them is easier. We can offer our products and services to them.

WR: Could you share a recent achievement or project that you are particularly proud of?

Rudy Mandap (RM): Actually, we have achieved a lot of projects already here in iCore, such as the numerous mobile apps that we have developed, as well as online platforms and marketplace. Our most recent achievement, however, is being a BSP-registered OPS (Operator of Payment Systems).

Rudy Mandap, Business Development

WR: Describe a typical day at iCore Technologies for your development and management teams.

RM: For me, as part of my job in business development, my day starts with checking emails to see if there are responses or feedback from our partners. Then I check on the pending tasks, like which need to be coordinated with the team. Then it’s the regular touch base with our CEO to discuss the things that have been accomplished as well as the status of the projects.

WR: Do you have a favorite spot here in Weremote?RM: The pantry! [laughs] Then of course, the office. And then the rest of the place where you can relax and play [table tennis]. When there are client visits, the conference and meeting rooms are very useful and convenient.

Weremote stands as a community where professionals and businesses thrive, offering a dynamic environment for growth. As the coworking brand of Wrkspace Office Management and Solutions Inc., Weremote continues to foster professional development and build vibrant communities. Weremote is a portfolio company of AHG Lab, the largest independent venture builder in the Philippines.

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