If you’ve ever wanted to experience the sport of surfing, Siargao is the place to go, and this October, the surfing capital of the Philippines is holding the 25th run of Siargao Cloud 9 Surfing Cup. As a World Surf League (WSL) official event, surfers from all over the world are coming together to show their skills from October 4-9, 2019.
This year, Globe, through its micro, small, and medium enterprise (MSME) arm Globe myBusiness, is working with the Siargao International Surfing Organizing Committee composed of the office of Rep. Francisco “Bingo” Matugas II, 1st District, Surigao del Norte; Surigao del Norte Provincial Government headed by Gov. Francisco “Lalo” Matugas; and General Luna local government unit led by Mayor Cecilia “Yayang” Rusillon, in an effort to push sustainable tourism and highlight Siargao as one of the best surfing destinations in the world.
The competition is especially important because surfing is now part of the 2020 Olympics. “The event will give our local surfers much-needed exposure and will help them earn points to qualify for the quadrennial event. Surfing is a sport in which our locals have excelled in. With the proper training and funding, our surfers can help us clinch an Olympic medal,” said Rep. Matugas.
He added: “Considering that this year is the 25th anniversary of the Siargao Cloud 9 Surfing Cup, we would like to make the event more grand and memorable. We recognize that we cannot do it alone. Globe’s valuable support will surely ensure the competition’s success.”
Ernest Cu, Globe President, and CEO, on the other hand, sees Siargao as having a lot of potentials to become one of the major tourist destinations in South East Asia, thus, the decision to help the growth of Siargao through digitalization and sustainability efforts.
Globe entered into a strategic partnership with the Department of Tourism recently for the promotion and digital transformation of the Philippine Tourism industry with Siargao as a showcase.
“We came in with a very long-term view for Siargao. We started with bringing connectivity to General Luna just in time to support this major surfing competition and we hope that the world stage will see this. Connectivity starts the transformation in many communities. For tourism, our guests from other countries and even local tourists can now instantly share their experience via social media. We know that people love to document their travels around the island and talk positively about their experience through Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms,” he said.
At the same time, Globe set up an Ecobooth at Cloud 9 that serves as a hub for environmental awareness conversation and sharing of best practices on how to protect and preserve the environment, particularly marine biodiversity. Anyone can visit the Ecobooth to exchange their plastic bags and plastic bottles with an eco-bag. They can also get exciting freebies like water tumbler and metal straw if they avail of GoSakto promos. Those who signed up as volunteers for the Oct 5 Siargao Beach Clean Up also received a Globe Eco-Kit.
Thousands of tourists flock to Siargao every year to experience the surf and sand. According to the DOT, tourism industries in the island of Siargao have significantly increased in the past five years.
Siargao has been named the Best Island in the World for 2019 by Condé Nast Traveler for its pristine waters, white sandy beaches, mangrove forests and authentic island vibe. Siargao, however, became famous first for its unbelievable waves and was already dubbed as the Surfing Capital of the Philippines and the 5th Best Surfing Spot in the world even before being acknowledged by Condé Nast Traveler.
For the past 24 years, the island has hosted the Siargao Cloud 9 Surfing Cup, a tour sanctioned by the World Surf League – the governing body for professional surfers. Last year, the event attracted 128 competitors from 20 countries, all battling for a spot on the Championship Tour. The event was broadcasted in over 40 countries and WSL’s passionate fan base tuned in across various platforms to watch the event. A total of more than 8.5 Million people were reached in both local and global press coverage.
The impact of the event on local tourism was also significant. Majority of the competitors brought a partner, parent or friend. It was estimated that the local economy gained approximately US$242,400 from the event.