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The Apprentice Asia: UP grad Jonathan Yabut: Always prepared for battle, 'malikot ang utak'

July 19, 2013 2:30pm
University of the Philippines economics graduate Jonathan Yabut, an executive of a pharmaceutical company, is one of the final two contestants of the reality show "The Apprentice Asia."

According to GMA Network's "Saksi" newscast on Thursday, Yabut will be competing against Singapore's Andrea Loh.

"The Apprentice Asia" is a reality TV series where candidates vie to become the apprentice of a business magnate.

Yabut bested 10 other applicants from a pool of 30,000 applicants.

He has so far completed eight tasks and various intensive interviews. 

The winner of the series will land a job as the right hand person of Asia's aviation tycoon Tony Fernandes.

'Saksi's” Mariz Umali caught up with Yabut in Hong Kong on Thursday, a day after it was announced that he was one of the two final contestants.

“Sobrang pangarap ko po [makasali dito]. Nung college pa lang ako, sobrang fan na ako nung show. Sobrang saya, di [ako] makapaniwala,” Yabut told Umali.

On his Twitter account, Yabut thanked all the Filpinos who were supporting him.

Yabut drew praises from fans and supporters on Twitter.


Yabut credits his success in "The Apprentice Asia" to the Filipino style of doing things; —“Diskarte.”

“Meron akong isang favorite word sa Tagalog na walang counterpart sa English at yun ang salitang diskarte,” he said. “When you say kasi diskarte, kanya-kanyang estilo para mabigyan ng solusyon ang isang problem.”

Yabut finished his Economics course at the University of the Philippines with Cum Laude honors.

He worked in a pharmaceutical company with Nikko Briguera, his schoolmate and teammate in the UP Debate Society.

Briguera said, “He's always prepared for the battle. It's more about the mental preparation na ina-undergo niya. Sobra niyang pinag-iisipan bawat galaw niya.”

“Very dynamic siya. Pag sinabak mo siya sa isang case ang bilis niya mag-isip,” he added.

'Malikot ang utak'

Meanwhile, Melissa Veloso, one of Yabut's superiors in the pharmaceutical company he is working for in the Philippines, said, “He's a very intelligent person. He's very smart, creative actually. Malikot ang utak ni Jonathan so he's able to come up with very innovative ideas."

Yabut worked as a senior product manager in the company and made his mark by making a new product the top brand in just eight months.

To his fellow Filipinos, Yabut said, “Pilipinas at kapwa kababayan, marami pong salamat sa inyong suporta sa pagpanood ng 'The Apprentice Asia.'” 

He urged his supporters to visit and to use the hashtag #AAJON which counts as a vote for him.

The 2-part finale of The Apprentice Asia will be aired at 9 pm on July 24 and 31 on the AXN cable channel. - Andrei Medina, VVP, GMA News
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