The Philippines' Tony Tan

The office of Jollibee Foods Corp. CEO Tony Tan Caktiong is spartan. While many Philippine executives keep penthouse suites, Tan's sixth-floor office has white walls, linoleum floors, and a plain wooden desk. "We try to be thrifty," says Tan, who learned the value of money in his family's Chinese restaurant business.

But throughout the crisis, Tan, 45, has invested in advertising and expansion, even adding a U.S. outlet. He also added more low-price menus for Jollibee's hamburgers, keeping them more popular than McDonald's fare. As a result, Jollibee's first-quarter profits are up 30%.

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