A general aviation pilot and entrepreneur has been flying to remote communities in the country to deliver medical supplies such as personal protective equipment and relief items amid the coronavirus pandemic.
After super typhoon ‘Rolly’ (Goni) devastated Catanduanes province, Lester Tancioco Codog used one of his aircraft to bring potable water distribution systems, food and clothes for the typhoon victims in the island province.
Codog is the chief executive of Codog Enterprise that operates several businesses. A reservist in the Philippine Air Force and a Class Charlie Mabalasik technical sergeant (1998-2000), he owns several aircraft. He also hosts a radio show at DZRH.
Before the onset of the pandemic, he regularly flew across the country to promote general aviation as a hobby and introduce different tourist destinations through his popular blog. Codog uses his aircraft as an opportunity to help other people, particularly those who require immediate medical transportation.
His group runs several businesses including aviation, automotive services, mining services, restaurants and public relations through Executive Air Aviation, Legacy Construction Corporation, Foilacar Industries and QCN Advertising.
The pandemic has made him realize new opportunities that he can offer to the people. “In the 11 years that I have been in the country now, I established different businesses already. From there, I went back to flying because that is the love of my life. So I opened a company that distributes a brand of aircraft. We offer charter. I also have contracts with mining companies. I am a partner in various restaurants. The latest is an advertising agency and consulting firm that I put up,” he says.
Today, he plans to focus more on agriculture to help farmers through Legacy Farms.
“I want to help my fellow Filipinos by giving them opportunities to have a better life, especially now that COVID-19 is not seeing its end in the not-so-distant future. It’s time to give back to my country,” he says.
His younger days were not all glitz and glamor. “I matured at a very young age. I started driving using my father’s car to go to bars,” he says. “Girls and cars were the best things for me. I started to love cars. I was being adventurous. Then I was kicked out of high school in Parañaque,” he narrates.
He became a janitor and construction worker in the United Kingdom, a tourist in Switzerland and a driver in the United Arab Emirates. In 2000, he joined his father in Dubai to become his assistant and all-around office boy. His father had a small business engaged in theme park construction and artificial landscaping.
Codog worked his way from the bottom to establish a name for himself. Despite his short stint at his father’s company in Dubai, Codog chose to establish his own.
From being a minority partner, Codog put up Design Unlimited that became one of the leading Filipino-owned companies in the UAE. When this business venture fell through because of the global economic crisis, Codog found his way in agriculture. He put up tea and cacao shops in various Asian countries which kick-started his agricultural venture.
Through these years, the 40-year-old entrepreneur has learned the value of having someone to lean on—hence, his advocacy of lending a helping hand to those in need.
Through Codog Enterprise, he hopes to open new doors and create job opportunities for his fellow Filipinos.
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