Personal Finance Champions: Efren Ll. Cruz, RFPBy Randell Tiongson on October 4th, 2011
Efren is one of the country’s most notable champions of financial literacy. He is a best-selling author, columnist and one of the most sought after speaker/trainer in the arena of personal finance. You will find Efren giving lectures all over the country educating hundreds of participants each time. There are also thousands of people who have benefited much from reading his two books. More than being notable, I am proud to say that Mr. Efren Ll. Cruz is perhaps one of the most respected individuals in the financial services industry.
I first met Efren after in 2006 after a class in Registered Financial Planner (RFP). Henry Ong, RFP President invited me to join their lunch Efren and his friend Atty. Caloy Ocampo. My initial impression on Efren was that he was a tad timid and very unassuming. He mentioned that he just wrote a book entitled Pwede Na! The Complete Pinoy Guide to Personal Finance which I ended up buying from him that day. As I read his book, I was enamored at the wisdom of Efren and I can discern his passion to help ordinary Filipinos get financially literate and achieve financial freedom. That fateful lunch was the beginning of my admiration for Efren, in fact I am proud to say that I am one of his earliest fans and I continue to be a fan!
Efren has an impressive pedigree in his area of expertise. He holds an MBA from the University of the Philippines and has been in the financial services industry for over 25 years, 18 years of which is in fund management. Efren is no stranger to managing wealth, working for institutions like Far East Bank, Grepalife Asset Management, Standard Chartered Bank and others. He is also one of the driving forces behind the mutual fund industry, serving at the Investment Company Association of the Philippines (ICAP) twice as President and once as Chairman. He also co-founded the Fund Managers Association of the Philippines. Efren has definitely earned the respect of his peers because of his hard work and dedication.
Efren is a favorite of many publications; as a contributor or columnists for Business Mirror, Moneysense and the Philippine Daily Inquirer. He is also a frequent resource person for many Radio and TV shows, too many to enumerate. He is one of the directors of the Registered Financial Planner Institute and a regular moderator of the program where he teaches on personal finance and investments.
One of Efren’s main advocacies is financial education for the workforce. Efren and his company, the Personal Finance Advisers Philippines Corp. has been in the forefront of providing financial literacy to many employees. He makes employers understand that it is in their best interest that employees are financially literate to ensure competitiveness and minimize work conflicts that will have a severe impact on bottom line. Efren Cruz has been actively seeking corporations to allow him and his company to teach their employees despite the great odds they face.
Another area where I admire Efren the most is that despite handling and teaching money all these years, he remains to be God fearing and always remind his listeners, participants and readers about the real purpose of wealth and money – to honor God, first and foremost.
I am so proud to say that Efren is one my esteemed mentors, an ally, a colleague and a most cherished friend. Efren, is on the top of my list as Personal Finance Champion. My prayer is that the country will have more Efren Cruz. Mabuhay ka Kuya Efren!
Check out his company website.