PSIA’s Jonathan De Luzuriaga on the growth of the Philippine software industry
by Asha Gutierrez
by Asha Gutierrez
Jonathan De Luzuriaga, president of the Philippine Software Industry Association (PSIA), wants to see the software developer community in his country take a more visible place in the global outsourcing industry. The man who has spent founding and leading business process outsourcing companies in the 7,107-island archipelago is passionate about this endeavor as he is about everything else he touches. He says, “Opportunities can be seen as it emanates from the fact that the entire world is going through some level of digital transformation. We feel that the Philippines is going to play a vital role in all of these.”
The man knows whereof he speaks. He helped birth what was then known as the national sunshine industry in the early 2000’s. He was also the Industry Affairs Executive Director of the industry association Business Process Association of the Philippines for many years.
Nation-building remains at the heart of De Luzuriaga’s efforts. The PSIA is active in supporting the aspirations of Filipino software professionals who want to become entrepreneurs. It has engaged the academe as a partner which provides course offerings and methods of instruction to these future businessmen. De Luzuriaga hints of the entrepreneurial potential that can be unleashed given the current status of the sector. He says, “We more or less rated around 2.27 billion US dollars in revenue for 2016 and currently, the software sector in employees are around 123,000 full time employees.”
Since its establishment 20+ years ago, PSIA has aimed for the consistent promotion of growth in the Philippine software industry. It continuously increases the competitiveness of the Philippines in the software services global market. De Luzuriaga continues to look at the potentials being offered in the future. He says, “We received almost close to 3 billion US dollars from the year 2016. We aim to have at least 5.7 billion dollars by 2022. This is all part of a roadmap that we are implementing within the Philippine Software Industry Association. PSIA aims to attain and sustain global leadership in market share, mindshare and innovation.”
De Luzuriaga mentions one goal that can benefit a significant number of his countrymen. “As far as employment is concerned, we are looking at about 207,000 direct employees for the Software sector by 2022,” he says.
PSIA will also focus on strengthening the small-to-medium-sized software firms and make them integral to the sector’s growth. To achieve this, De Luzuriaga believes that improvements in the following areas are needed: Upgraded training for current workers, and a solid academic foundation for new graduates. The existence of a central technology hub that will incubate more companies and develop innovative ideas, similar to what Silicon Valley has been doing
De Luzuriaga is spearheading the establishment of that hub in the province of Capiz in the Philippines. Spring Valley is a hub for software start-ups that will be providing support and resource to its “citizens”. Creativity and innovation in ideas and technology will be cultivated. Spring Valley will start with a challenge for fledgling entrepreneurs to create a definite plan that will help them attain their own respective visions, and make them significant players in the industry. Spring Valley will also foster a spirit of collaboration among its members to help each other reach significant growth.
De Luzuriaga enthuses, “We need to create our own IT as a country and start realizing and supporting the start-ups that are slowly but surely getting some traction coming from the Republic of the Philippines. In time, our start-up community will grow and develop into becoming huge IT players.”