College Dropout Grows Multinational Company from Just Php500, Now Worth Php2 Billion!

While education is one of the best ways to secure a good future, scores of people have proved that education is not always the key to success but is merely a stepping stone towards reaching a goal – and success is still largely determined by a person’s perseverance and, oftentimes, also luck!

Take for example Carlos Hinolan, a Filipino who was not able to obtain his degree in BS Computer Science but was able to build a multinational company now worth an estimated Php2 billion! But would you believe he started his company with just Php500? That’s the most amazing thing about Hinolan’s brainchild, AudioWAV.

The company offers personalized music playlists for retail stores and fast food chains; they also offer scent diffusers. Today, AudioWAV not just supplies music and various audio needs to various establishments in the Philippines, it also has many clients outside the country, including in Singapore and Indonesia.

Carlos Hinolan
Photo credit: Inquirer

But the company had humble beginnings some 13 years ago when Hinolan, then a club DJ, noticed that there was ‘d*ad air’ inside restaurants. Seeing the need to provide music to these restaurants, he built AudioWAV – and the rest, as they say, is history.

Hinolan recalled, “I saw a lot of [foot] traffic in all these retail [stores] and fast-food chains, and [inside], all they had was d*ad air [no music]. All of this started with P500. I bought a cheap microphone, and I used it with a second-hand computer to record and create content.”

He was quite lucky to get his first client, a fast food chain with over 200 outlets. It was definitely a big break for the company! From that first big client, the company quickly grew and provided personalized CDs to more restaurant chains and mall establishments.

Hinolan said, “There are people trying to do this—DJs doing CDs, [for example]. I’ve seen stores assigning people to change the CDs every hour. We solved the pain of [doing that], so that when [a] marketing [team] does a campaign, there won’t be any hiccups.

Photo by Shutterstock

Seeing the need to update the company’s products with the times, he upgraded the CDs to digital music and personal computers – something that his clients greatly appreciated. The company also remotely controls all the clients’ digital contents from their headquarters in Laguna Technopark in Biñan, Laguna; thus, allowing their clients to focus on their business while letting AudioWAV take full control of their music and ambience!

We spent a lot of years making sure that execution is hands-free and convenient for clients. We’re not using anything off-the-shelf. We’re capable of making our own scents. [Ultimately, AudioWAV] is all about creating intelligent stores,” Hinolan revealed.