Muni on this:
What if you could collaborate with awesome people, help fulfill their passions, and funkify the world all at the same time?
Punchdrunk Panda doesn’t claim to save the world, but they try to save it from the bland, boring and uninspired through the their graphic-designed merch (camera straps, shoes, laptop sleeves, etc.) or inspired events (i.e. Anteroom Sessions).
The team began with co-founders Jen & Gail, and they owe their success to all the people who have helped and collaborated with them at one point or another. And Jen swears there were A LOT of people who generously gave their time and effort in collaborating with them.
[The PdP team with various PdP collaborators – artists/illustrators, musicians, and bloggers : ) Photo c/o PdP]
Muni: What inspired you to put up PdP?
Jen: I feel it was kind of an accident really. Haha. We initially set up the business as a means of making extra money, but eventually, it wasn’t enough for us that it was just a shallow racket, so we tried to find meaning / purpose as we grew the business, and we found that by really showcasing Filipino designers & artists through our products, and highlighting Filipino talent and creativity through our products and events like Anteroom Sessions.
Muni: What background prepared you to handle PdP?
Gail: My family has our own business so more than just solid education from my undergrad degree (Management Engineering), it was actually inspiration from my parents (and other family owned businesses) that prepared me to handle PdP.
Jen: I guess I’ve kind of been entrepreneurial in the sense that when I encounter something new, I think, can I make something like that — or better yet, can I make a better version of that? Then all the other business stuff, you really just learn along the way. I took up Psychology in college, by the way.
Muni: What keeps you motivated to run PdP?
Gail: The artists that we work with. The brand/icon that we’ve established to date. All the loyal customers who really believe in PdP and get excited whenever they get their orders.
Muni: What change do you want to see in the world?
Gail: Not the world per se but just the Philippines. I wish there was a system to really support small businesses. It can be quite challenging to get a distribution network, to source for raw materials, and more!
Muni: What do you wish people were more conscious/aware about?
Jen: I wish people were more conscious about the things they buy, not only in that they buy Philippine-made goods, but also that they question processes and supply chain. It encourages entrepreneurs to think more creatively and re-think how business is done, and how it can be further improved. And as importantly, it helps educate the customer and makes them realize that buying local may not necessarily be cheaper (vs. mass-produced China-made goods), but that it is a nation-building alternative to buying imported products when other options can be purchased locally. When customers understand the processes that go behind the manufacturing of a product, the higher the value they place on it, and the less disposable or wasteful it becomes as well.
Punchdrunk Panda is not what people would conventionally consider a social enterprise, but they do have the power to make causes cool, with their support for local artists, and a recent collaboration with Save The Philippine Seas (SPS). A percentage of the above Splash ladies’ skimmers goes to marine conservation project of SPS.
In their own words: “We might not pass bills or stage rallies, but we are your friendly neighborhood sunshine-bringers, very necessary members of society, who help keep the bigger movers and shakers inspired and happy”.