ABS-CBN Corporation kicked off its 60th anniversary’s year-long celebration as a media institution that pioneered television in the country and how it has been in the service of the Filipinos ever since 1950s.
“ABS-CBN is living institution composed of you, me and every employee that has dedicated himself or herself to be in the service of the Filipino. That’s what we have been doing for the past 60 years and that is what ABS-CBN will continue to do for all its existence,” he ABS-CBN Chairman Eugenio “Gabby” Lopez III in his speech.
Lopez told ABS-CBN employees at a recent gathering that ABS-CBN will continue to undertake pioneering projects and introduce innovations starting this year. He said, “Many radical and trailblazing strategies will be launched that will redefine the way we do business.”
He added, “You will see an ABS-CBN that uses the foundation of content to mold itself into a company that offers consumer solutions that has never been seen before. It a result of listening to our consumers and responding to them in ways they want and desire. It is about creating one-on-one relationships with each Filipino that we serve. This is what our mission is all about.”
With the theme “Kwento Natin ‘To,” ABS-CBN’s 60th anniversary pays tribute to the life stories of each and every Filipino that molded ABS-CBN to becoming the country’s leading TV network and inspired the hardworking people behind it to live up to the company’s motto.
“‘Kwento natin to’ doesn’t pertain to the story of ABS-CBN rather the story of each and every Filipino. Philippine TV is a magical box that contains the colors of our collective experiences, emotions, dreams, imaginations, and all things that make us human and make us Filipino,” said ABS-CBN President and CEO Charo Santos-Concio. “The celebration of the 60th year of Philippine TV is our way of thanking and paying tribute to our fellow Filipinos.
Concio pointed out how television has become part of the Filipinos’ daily lives. She said, “For Filipinos, drama and comedy programs are reflections of their real lives. News programs reflect their realities and how the times molded them to be stronger in facing their daily struggles. Talent and reality shows reflects their dreams and aspirations, while variety shows reflects the joy they feel whenever they are with their families or friends.
But she clarified that the viewers don’t owe ABS-CBN anything for providing quality and top-caliber programs. Instead, it is ABS-CBN that owes the viewers since all of its works are inspired from their stories.
As part of the year-long celebration, 60 employees will share their stories on-air as to how ABS-CBN has become part of their lives. The first eight stories were premiered in the event that includes the stories of cameraman Val Cuenca, promo specialist Christine Estabillo, program executive Riza Ebriega, news bureau chief Dindo Amparo, regional news reporter Joan Panopio, sales executive Herman Pablico, radio supervisor Aris Jurado , and Manila Radio Division head Peter Musngi.
ABS-CBN Chairman and CEO Eugenio “Gabby” Lopez III was moved with the stories he witnessed and referred to it as “living reminders of why ABS-CBN was built.”
ABS-CBN, which stands for Alto Broadcasting System Chronicles Broadcasting Network, truly played a major role in the broadcasting history of the Philippines. The TV network was born back in the 1950s when CBS, owned by Eugenio Lopez Sr., bought ABS, then owned by Antonio Quirino.
ABS-CBN was the first to broadcast in full color in Southeast Asia and its programs such “You’re Evening with Pilita,” “Tawag ng Tanghalan,” and “Buhay Artista” are popular in the pan-region. Its broadcast center, which was inaugurated in 1968, was the second most advanced TV facility in Asia next to NHK of Japan.
The network was closed in 1972 because of the declaration of the Martial Law but was returned back to operations in 1986 after the historic People Power revolution.
ABS-CBN started from scratch again but through the efforts of Eugenio “Kapitan” Lopez Jr., Freddie M. Garcia, and Atty. Jake Lopez, ABS-CBN became number one again in 1988.
The 60 years of Philippine TV kick off event was hosted by “TV Patrol” anchors Noli De Castro and Korina Sanchez. Gary Valenciano, Kuh Ledesma, Jed Madela, Erik Santos, Yeng Constantino, Jovit Baldivino, Marcelito Pomoy, and KZ Tandingan also rendered song numbers with musical accompaniment by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra.