Anton worked as Chief Information Officer for Procter & Gamble, the biggest multinational company in the Philippines, for more than 12 years before quitting to become a full-time online entrepreneur in 2008.
OurAwesomePlanet.com, which he started in 2005, is now the No. 1 food and travel blog in the Philippines. His advocacy: To promote the “Food and Travel Secrets in the Philippines” and to inspire Filipinos that living in the Philippines is truly awesome!
Anton’s decision to blog full time was a huge success. His global traffic records include close to 1,000,000 hits a month, 30,000 page views a day, more than 83,000 fans on Facebook, more than 16,000 followers on Twitter and more than 10,000 subscribers via email. And his numbers keep growing.
Recently, he co-founded the successful weekend markets Mercato Centrale at Bonifacio Global City and Mezza Norte at Trinoma, Cucina Andare; the first Food Truck Market at Levante at Eastwood City;
For his success, he was recognized with Go Negosyo's Inspiring Young Filipino Entrepreneur Award in 2010 and was featured in Go Negosyo's seventh book, "Go Negosyo's 50 Inspiring Stories of Young Entrepreneurs," in 2011.
Why Our Awesome Planet?
“I felt that the Lonely Planet Guide was not representing the Philippines very well,” Anton said. “I wanted to share food and travel discoveries in the Philippines that was never published before. Usually these are secrets of different places that are only shared through word-of-mouth. Also, I felt "Lonely" was a little negative, so I branded the blog with a more positive twist -- Our Awesome Planet.”
Anton started his blog, OAP for short, in January 2005 after the big tsunami hit Southeast Asia, and before his first son, Aidan, was born in Asian Hospital.
At the time, the art of blogging was new.
“The only thing going for me was my love of photography and my love of anything related with technology,” Anton said. “I was not a writer. The only things I ever wrote were my engineering related papers (he is an Electronic Communications Engineering graduate) and project-related documents at Procter & Gamble. At the onset, the only thing on my mind was to write for my newborn son, Aidan, a little bit of his parents’ history and his childhood days.”
“I still can't forget the first time we brought Aidan to El Nido Palawan, playing in the waters of Shimizu and Entalula Island; and our first time on the now, members-only island of Balesin,” he said. Fast forward to 2014. Anton now has three boys: Aidan, 9; Joshua, 6; Raphael, 4; with baby No. 4 on the way.
Anton was tempted to turn OAP into an online magazine, but he decided to keep OAP as a family blog, “turning it to something like a virtual heirloom that will be handed on to my sons.” And blogging runs in the family.
“My wife, Rache, is now blogging at www.MrsAwesomePlanet.com, and Aidan just created his first blog post.”
Anton also is hard at work on his first book, “Food & Travel Secrets of the Philippines!” and aspires to be a respected food writer and historian like Doreen Fernandez, a National Geographic photographer like George Tapan, and a successful professional blogger like Darren Rowse.
“Even though I am not there yet, I hope that my journey will inspire at least one soul to strive hard and be the best that he/she can be,” Anton said. “In the end, even if I don't become as famous as Doreen, George or Darren, as long as I know that I left this world a little better, I think I made my mark!”
To read more, visit Anton’s blog at Our Awesome Planet. To contact him, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or message him on Facebook and on Twitter @antondiaz