Latest Stories

He cooked, cleared tables, washed dishes–‘lead by example,’ says Archie Rodriguez


Archie Rodriguez, president and CEO of Global Restaurant Concepts, Inc.

Some of Archie Rodriguez’s biggest critics every time he brings in a US-based restaurant chain to the Philippines are his close friends and family, including his stylish designer-wife Bea Valdes and their three kids.

“When they try the restaurants, Bea would sometimes tell me about certain design things that I need to improve on,” said Rodriguez, president and CEO of Global Restaurant Concepts, Inc. (See main story.)

“Of course, she’s also quite vocal about the food’s quality. But my kids are the ultimate critics. If they like the food, chances are the restaurant would do well. If they don’t like it, I’d be very concerned.”

Valdes’ inputs, although welcome, are always said after the fact. Since both husband and wife have their respective business concerns, they try as much as possible not to discuss business matters at home. Instead, they spend their precious and few moments together talking about “normal” things involving family.

Apart from Rodriguez’s 12-year-old daughter with his former wife, he and Valdes have two kids of their own. Their youngest is less than a year old, while the older one is now 5.

There was a time when they used to discuss work-related matters at home. For a time, Rodriguez even helped Valdes’ fledgling bag business. The arrangement suited them well, but the couple found out later that not talking about cash flows and bottom lines proved healthier for their relationship.

“We find that we’re happier when we don’t talk about work because work can be serious,” he said.

Valdes’ sister Marga Trinidad is now the former’s business manager. But Rodriguez’s doors are always open should they need advice, especially on financial matters.

After being part of Global for the past 16 years now, bringing in such well-known and iconic US restaurant chains as California Pizza Kitchen (CPK), PF Chang’s and IHOP, to name a few, Rodriguez has plenty to offer fellow businessmen in terms of advice.

Although Rodriguez, 41, was exposed to various businesses his dad Jack Rodriguez Sr. was involved in, including the Bistro Group of Restaurants, he never worked for him. Neither was he as passionate as he is now with the restaurant business when he was younger.

“Except for Bistro, I sit on the board of our other companies,” said Rodriguez, who expressed the deepest admiration for his dad. “But I don’t run any of these companies. For the most part, I’m focused on Global. I also have partners here.”


Joint ventures

When he began carving out a career for himself in business at quite a young age, Rodriguez was into computers and information technology. He also had a number of joint ventures with friends, including former Sen. Miguel Zubiri, managing such local restaurant chains as Tequila Joe.

But it was his initial involvement with CPK that turned things around. After a three-month, hands-on involvement in operations—from taking down orders to cooking, clearing tables to washing dishes—Rodriguez fell in love with the business.

As one of the pillars behind Global, he could have delegated the dirty job to one of his subordinates. But being new to the business, Rodriguez wanted to learn firsthand by immersing himself in it. And the best way to learn the ropes, he insisted, is by starting at the bottom.

“I’m fortunate enough to have worked with a strong team,” he said. “One of the keys to success in business is having good people to support you. Apart from empowering and entrusting them to make the right decisions, you also have to lead by example. I work as hard as anybody even during weekends or any time of the day, if necessary.”

Rodriguez then slowly transitioned from IT to the food business. He hasn’t totally abandoned his love for digital technology, as one of the family’s businesses, apart from real estate, is a call center serving companies in the US, UK and Australia.

“But most of my waking hours are spent in the restaurant business,” he said.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Archie Rodriguez , Bea Valdes , California Pizza Kitchen , CPK , Food , Global Restaurant Concepts , Ihop , Inc. , Jack Rodriguez , PF Chang’s , restaurant chains , Tequila Joe

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. How to enjoy Buntod
  2. World bids Gabriel Garcia Marquez ‘Adios’
  3. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  4. ‘Wild West’ Masbate’s pristine marine gems
  5. Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  6. How Margie Moran-Floirendo keeps her dancer’s body
  7. Life lessons I want to teach my son
  8. Garcia Marquez left unpublished manuscript
  9. Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  10. Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  3. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  4. Miss America: Don’t suspend teen over prom invite
  5. Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  6. This is not just a farm
  7. How Margie Moran-Floirendo keeps her dancer’s body
  8. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  9. 12 other things you can do at Pico de Loro Cove
  10. President Quezon was born here–and so was Philippine surfing
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  3. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  4. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  5. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  6. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  7. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  8. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  9. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  10. Sen. Angara: I thought Pia Wurtzbach gave a good answer


  • Napoles tags over 100 officials in pork scam – Lacson
  • Vitangcol to sue Czech envoy
  • Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  • 43 out of 414 Etihad passengers yet to be found, tested for MERS-CoV – Palace
  • Maid confesses in killing of 2 and stabbing of employer in Laguna
  • Sports

  • UP nips St. Benilde; Adamson blasts RTU in Filoil women’s caging
  • Kevin Garnett responds to Raptors’ GM F word
  • Albert Pujols hits 500th HR of major league career
  • UST posts twin kill in Filoil pre-season cup opening day
  • Wizards beat Bulls in OT to take 2-0 series lead
  • Lifestyle

  • Entering the monkhood a rite of passage
  • Haneda International Airport: A destination on its own
  • Wanted: Beauty queen with a heart that beats for the environment
  • Kim Atienza: At home with art and design
  • Life lessons I want to teach my son
  • Entertainment

  • Bollywood Oscars, film stars come to Florida
  • Ex-Fox exec denies allegations in sex abuse suit
  • Kris Aquino backtracks, says Herbert Bautista and her are ‘best friends’
  • Summer preview: Chris Pratt enters a new ‘Galaxy’
  • Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in US
  • Business

  • SM to rebuild Tacloban hospital
  • PSEi slips after 4-day rally
  • Toyota sells 2.58 million vehicles, outselling GM
  • McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline
  • SEC approves SM’s P15B retail bond offer
  • Technology

  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Engineers create a world of difference
  • Bam Aquino becomes Master Splinter’s son after Wiki hack
  • Mark Caguioa lambasts Ginebra teammates on Twitter
  • Opinion

  • One-dimensional diplomacy: A cost-benefit analysis of Manila’s security deal with Washington
  • No ordinary illness
  • Reforest mountains with fire trees and their kind
  • Day of the Earth
  • When will Chinese firm deliver new coaches?
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos coming home from Mideast must obtain MERS clearance – DOH
  • US Secret Service in Manila ahead of Obama visit
  • Palace thanks Estrada for successful HK mission
  • Hong Kong accepts PH apology; sanctions also lifted
  • China won’t budge, wants PH gov’t to apologize to HK