After a 17-year-old created a thriving business selling the vegetable, you’ll never say “pupulutin ka sa kangkungan” the same way again.
Josh Mojica, also known as “Jhelo,” is a 17-year-old. His desire was to get a high-end laptop or computer, but his mother couldn’t afford it.
“Dati po hindi po ako makabili ng pang-module ko na laptop at PC. Nag-away pa po kami ng mother ko noon kasi ang gusto ko pong PC ay yung pang-edit, mataas po yung specs. Yung mother ko, ang afford lang po niya ay yung mga P10,000, ganun po, pag-iipunan pa niya iyon,” Mojica said.
“Ngayon po dahil sa Kangkong Chips business ko, nakabili na po ako ng laptop na gusto ko yung specs.”
Mojica was able to develop a successful business by selling Kangkong Chips with a beginning capital of P3,000 at a young age and without any coaching or direction from anyone.
“I started planning the business in May 2021, the birthday of my Lolo. The Kangkong Chips were my tita’s recipe, she cooked it for Lolo’s birthday. Lolo found it really delicious—it was crispy and tasty. He was surprised how Kangkong could be that good.
It was at that moment when I thought of selling it. I posted it on Facebook and I gained one loyal customer."
Josh shut down his company in 2021 after becoming distracted by video games.
“Hindi po ako ganoon ka-pursigido at first, nalulon po ako sa teenage life distractions.”
But after his Lolo died in June, Mojica took things seriously. But, before he died, he said something to his grandson that he would never forget.
“Bago po mawala si Daddy (Lolo), tandang tanda ko po na sinabi niya sa akin, ‘Jhelo, hindi madali ang buhay, akala mo ba? Kaya huwag mong bababaan ang pangangarap.’”
“After hearing that, I changed my life. Nag-iba na po ako ng landas, ng habits. From distractions, I self-isolated so I can execute everything I planned in my head. I sat in front of the computer, I designed a logo and packaging, and the next day, I bought ingredients, and then the following day, I woke up early to finish the product.”
The products were shot by Mojica himself, and he promoted them on social media. He just had P3,000 in his bank account. He submitted the final items to his mother, who was overjoyed at what he had produced in just three days.
His Lolo, on the other hand, had a misfortune.
“After ko po matapos yung finished product, hindi ko pa po naipapakita kay Daddy, nang biglang parang dadalhin na siya sa ospital.”
His Lolo died in June 2021, just one month after Mojica began developing his Kangkong Chips venture. That, on the other hand, has only fueled his desire to excel in business.
He now has ten staff that he supervises in the production of Kangkong Chips. Some of his coworkers are also his friends.
“Gusto ko po yung may madala ako, I don’t want to achieve something alone. Gusto ko may kasama ako kasi masarap po iyon sa pakiramdam. As a team, lahat po ng kasama mo sa mga kalokohan, sa normal na buhay ng isang teenager, gusto ko po may mabago sa amin dahil kakaiba kami at may magagawa kami na papatunayan naming posible."
“Ito kami ngayon, mga batang dating pariwara o puro gala, mga sinasabihan na puro laro, pero ngayon po nagpupursige para patunayang posible.”
Mojica is able to deliver more Kangkong Chips to his clients now that he has a larger kitchen and a crew of ten. On his Shopee store, a bag of Kangkong chips costs P110. Mojica sells 1,500 to 2,000 bags of Kangkong Chips on Shopee and Facebook every month.
“Dati po wala po kaming kitchen, pero ngayon nakapagpagawa na rin po kami dito sa bahay.”
Mojica manages his company on his own, although he has since handed the financial aspects to his mother. “Mag-isa po ako nag-run ng buong business, and then, ngayon po na kailangan na po ma-establish, kinuha ko na po yung mama ko,” says the entrepreneur.
Mojica gets his kangkong from the public market, where he has vendors that supply him with the vegetable on a daily basis.
“Kumokontak po kami ng public vendors para na rin po matulungan sila sa vegetable selling.
“Hindi pa po kami nakakaabot ngayon sa Mindanao and the Visayas kasi we can’t shoulder the logistics yet because of the amount of orders in Luzon.”
Despite the fact that Mojica had no one to help him operate his firm, he learned a lot by doing it on his own.
“An important lesson I learned when I was starting my business is you have to know whether you are capable of running the business. Dapat, kaya mo mag-isa. Dapat disiplinado ka nang mag-isa. Dapat hindi ka masyado madaling yayain o maimpluwensiyanan na ‘ito gawin mo, sumunod ka,’ because you will stray from your goals. You are your own boss so you need so much discipline. Kung susunod ka lang din sa iba, yung business mo parang ganoon lang din.
“Ang payo ko sa inyo ay stay optimistic and move fast, kasi habang bata pa kayo, iyan na ang chance ninyo na gawing stable ang life ninyo,” Mojica shares with Esquire Philippines.
“Move fast! Nasa inyong mga kamay ang pag-asa na maging stable ang life niyo. I’m young, but I strive for stability, and I think that should be the mindset of the youth. Move fast, especially in business. Dapat mabilis kasi ang negosyo, bumabagsak kung hindi mabilis yung tao. Parang sa eroplano lang. Hindi babagsak ang eroplano kung may sapat na bilis, kahit walang pakpak.”
“If you’ve thought of a plan, don’t sleep until you have not executed it. You should be aware of what you know and what you don’t know, and focus on being good. Whatever you do, do it well. Mahirap kung hindi ka excellent, because your life will depend on it. Treat everything with excellence and watch how your life changes.”
How This 17-Year-Old Made a Successful Business Out of Kangkong|Esquire Philippines