Like most hoops crazy Filipinos, bilyonaryo Lance Gokongwei also dreamed of being a basketball player in his youth.
“When I was much younger, I really enjoyed playing basketball. So maybe I would’ve wanted to be a basketball player,” Lance told Ayala Corp, chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala in his online talk show “After Six.”
The 55-year old Lance could have played professional hoops considering that his family owned a basketball team in the PBA – Great Taste, Presto and Tivoli – from 1975 to 1993.
But being the heir apparent, Lance had very little career choice but to run the business empire built from scratch by his father, taipan John Gokongwei.
Lance also went abroad in his teens – he finished his last two years in high school in Singapore before going to the University of Pennsylvania where he graduated Summa Cum Laude.
Instead of spending his vacation perfecting his stroke and dribble, his father sent him to Robinsons Department Store to put price tags on underwear and jeans. .
Lance himself is the first to admit he won’t make a living out of playing ball.. “Of course my skills set was never commensurate with my aspirations,” said Lance.
Fortunately for him, there is the alumni basketball team of his beloved Xavier School to live out his childhood dream.
“i have to say in my older years they always invited me to be part of the alumni school team. I was always the twelfth man because they needed somebody to sponsor the team,” deadpanned Lance.