Words and Photos by Karl Angelo De Los Santos
NBA fans would probably remember “The Ice Man” George Gervin who finished with an NBA career average of 26.2 points per game. Gervin is widely regarded to be one of the greatest shooting guards in NBA history. Cool under pressure, Gervin earned the moniker for his steady hands even under extreme pressure.
Former Zobel basketball jock Aldo Malixi could very well also be nicknamed “The Iceman” for many reasons. On the court, 6’4” power forward Malixi plays tough both on defense and offense, with a good shooting arm from within the perimeter. But his “boy next door” looks make him look like a cool cat on the hardwood floor.
Today, Malixi can still be seen playing in “La Salle alumni-leagues” but he now spends more time in an ice plant in Dasmarinas Cavite, providing “food-grade purified tube ice and bottled water to business establishments all around Cavite, Laguna, Sta. Rosa, Parañaque, Alabang and Makati.
Named after his mom and dad, former La Salle Basketball Green Archer Alex Malixi and Shelly (nee Martinez), ANS Ice Plant Inc., opened for business in 2011. It is located at Emilio Aguinaldo Highway, Dasmariñas, Cavite, along the road leading to Silang and Tagaytay.
“Our brand name is Stay Below Zero. We produce food-grade purified tube ice and bottled water, we distribute all around Cavite, Laguna, Alabang, Sta. Rosa, Parañaque Alabang and Makati. We have 3 industrial-sized purified water stations connected to our Vogt tube ice makers and bottled water lines. Vogt, for your information, is the leading tube ice-making brand in the U.S.. Most of the other brands are based on Vogt designs”, the young Malixi explains.
He further adds, “our maximum tube ice-making capacity now is 100 tons, and we have 10 delivery trucks. We started with half the capacity and 4 delivery trucks, but we soon acquired some big clients like 7-Eleven, Ministop, SM, Robinsons, Rustan’s, Shopwise, FamilyMart, and Festival Mall just to name a few.”
Located in a vast real estate, which was formerly a hog farm that was up and running from the ‘70s until recently. Due to the area’s development and commercialization, the Malixi’s were left with no choice but to shift to a business compliant with the zoning ordinance, as hog farming was no longer allowed in the area.
As the old saying goes, when a door closes, God opens a window. Father and son “thought of utilizing the expertise of our U.S. based company, AVM Company that exports industrial equipment from the U.S. to the Philippines. We came across the Vogt tube ice machine while researching for a new business endeavor. We started putting two and two together to check if the tube ice business would be feasible. We had a good source of water, we were in a great location, which was in the middle of several malls, restaurants, and convenient stores; we had half a hectare of real estate to work with for the needed structures and equipment”.
“All we needed was a tube icemaker and storage, which we had the means of importing through AVM Company. We went for the ice plant because it seemed like a lucrative business that could utilize the companies that we are affiliated with, thus the inception of ANS Ice Plant Inc.”
“The tube ice business is a lucrative business but of course there will always be challenges. This is a 24/7 operation so there is no time to slack off. The ice business thrives on weekends, the holiday season, and all those other days when people are off, relaxing, and enjoying. We work hard during regular days and work even harder on weekends and special occasions. It is also a challenge to keep the people motivated when working on holidays and weekends. The other challenges are pretty common, like people management, maintenance of equipment and trucks, keeping expenses down especially with the rising prices of raw materials, fuel, and electricity.”
But despite all these challenges, you can be sure that Aldo “The Iceman” Malixi will keep his cool.