CEO & Co-Founder, Shoplinks
(In her 40's)
Her story (as shared by her nominator)
Teresa spent 17 years in CPG industry leading billion dollar brands across various corporate roles and building Analytics & Data capabilities at P&G. In 2015, while she was on maternity leave and was learning about how machines are being taught to see, she got excited on what's possible in market research applications. This led to the foundation of Snapcart, a cashback app that incentivises consumers to take photos of their receipts in exchange for rewards. She led the team to develop OCR and over 400 machine learning models to teach machines how to read receipts.
In 2019, Teresa took over as CEO to help drive the company’s focus towards full automation to improve margins. However, later that year, she found a calling in another opportunity among retailers in FMCG which only amplified in urgency with COVID. She started Shoplinks which enables digital transformations for grocery stores, large and small, to enable supplier brands to send digital promotions to their shoppers through their technology-enabled grocery partners.
Teresa has successfully transitioned from tenured corporate roles to be a serial entrepreneur, from being the data lover and builder into a savvy entrepreneur who could raise millions of dollars of funding from investors.
She is passionate about analytics and data building capabilities, and has learnt languages like Python and R, which eventually led to these startups. She loves to hire, coach and mentor talents to become strong performers and leaders. Apart from a stellar career, she is also the CEO and Founder of JMC Escuela Foundation, a non-profit organization with aim provide educational support and analytics skills to less privileged but deserving children in the Philippines. She is an inspiration to many others driven her love for fitness and ability to juggle being a great mom to 2 young boys in addition to all these roles.
In her words:
I am fortunate to have been able to build a new business and develop a capable team to deliver value in helping large and small retailers grow during the pandemic. Starting a business during a pandemic is not easy, because of our inability to meet clients face to face, recruiting talents remotely, and moving to a fully distributed team. But we persisted and thrived.
Biggest challenge thus far
I moved from a long corporate career to entrepreneurship, and this needed steep learning curves across different skill sets-- from product development, technology, legal and finances, communication and leadership, to managing P&L. All while raising two small children. It would not have been possible without humility and acknowledging things I did not know, so I can learn.
what judges say
Being tech-savvy and re-learning new skills to create a brand that is known in the retail sector - Yay to that!