Apr 192014
San Miguel set to start work on Boracay airport

MANILA, Philippines – Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) will start work on the Boracay airport within the first half of the year to allow the country’s seventh busiest airport to accommodate larger aircraft amid the growing number of tourists to the world-renowned beach island. In its disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, SMC said the extension of the runway of the Boracay airport, also known as Godofredo P. Ramos Airport, is on schedule as preparatory work at the site are ongoing. The company said construction is targeted to start within the first half and preparatory work for the new terminal is scheduled to proceed in the fourth quarter of the year. “Once the project is complete by 2016, the Boracay airport will be able to accommodate larger aircraft, boosting tourism not just to the country’s top tourist destination, but also to the rest of the Visayas region,” SMC said. Data showed that tourist arrivals in Boracay Island in Aklan jumped 13 percent to 1.363 million last year from 1.206 million in 2012. SMC has a 99.72 percent interest in Trans Aire Development Holdings Corp. (TADHC) that holds a 25-year concession to operate the Boracay airport. It holds the exclusive rights, obligations and privileges to finance, design, construct, operate and maintain the airport by virtue of a concession agreement with the DOTC and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP). Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 TADHC is currently overseeing the modernization of the airport. Long-term Read More …

Oct 272013
San Miguel takes over Aleco

MANILA, Philippines – Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. formally takes over ailing Albay Electric Cooperative (Aleco), Energy Secretary Carlos Jericho Petilla said over the weekend. The two parties will sign the agreement tomorrow, Oct. 29, in a formal ceremony at San Miguel’s headquarters in Ortigas. “The takeover is merely a formality because they’re already assessing right now. I don’t know how many people they have in Aleco but they are now doing the inspection works. The signing is for me, just ceremonial or formality,” Petilla said. Under the agreement, San Miguel Corp., through SMC Global Power Holdings Corp. would be spending at least P250 million to pay off Aleco’s debts. This is just the minimum, Petilla said. Albay Governor Joey Salceda has said that San Miguel also needs to spend for the plant’s rehabilitation, which could cost up to P1 billion. Aleco’s system loss is 24 percent compared to the cap of 13 percent.   Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 Salceda attributed Aleco’s situation to its failure to collect from its customers and also to systems losses stemming from its obsolete equipment. Once rehabilitated, however, Salceda said San Miguel would be able to generate revenues of about P600 million annually. San Miguel will manage the operations of Aleco for 35 years, with the option to extend this for another 25 years. Last July, Aleco had been disconnected from the main grid because of mounting debts, plunging Albay into darkness. It was reconnected the following day upon Read More …

Aug 122013
San Miguel to form new unit for Angat hydropower

MANILA, Philippines – Highly-diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) will form a new unit to handle its investment in the Angat hydro powerplant, a company disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) said. At the same time, SMC said its board also authorized the management of Angat “to discuss, negotiate, and to enter into a joint venture with K-Water Resources Corp., under the terms and conditions favorable to the company.” SMC said the new entity would undertake the administration, rehabilitation, operation and management of the hydropower facility. Last month , SMC announced plans to form a joint venture with K-Water for the Angat plant. K-Water is currently negotiating to bring down the $440.88-million price tag on the plant, citing the state of the facility as well as several changes the government put in the agreements signed by both parties. K-Water won the bidding in 2010 for the 218-megawatt plant, which sources its power from the Angat Dam in Bulacan. The Korean water firm said it wants to “achieve the same level of benefits expected” in its 2010 bid for the power plant and wants the plant’s Auxiliary Units 4 and 5 to be included in the takeover. The auxiliary units are owned by the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1

Jul 152013
SMC raising $4 B to fund transformation

MANILA, Philippines – San Miguel Corp.’s plan to raise about $4 billion by selling power assets brings it closer to funding the Philippines’ biggest company’s expansion into industries and infrastructure. The Southeast Asian nation’s most acquisitive company plans to spend $35 billion to complete Ramon Ang’s strategy to transform SMC from a brewer and foodmaker into an investor in energy, mining, airlines and roads. San Miguel, which started making beer before the country declared independence from Spain more than 100 years ago, has made more than $5.6 billion worth of purchases since 2008, when it announced an investment in Manila Electric Co. That stake has more than tripled in value, while Ang acquired control of Petron Corp., the country’s largest refiner, and bought three of the nation’s biggest power plants. “Ang has been an opportunistic entrepreneur and he has seen better opportunities so he’s selling assets that have already paid off to fund these new ventures,” said Marvin Fausto, who oversees about $20 billion as Manila-based chief investment officer at BDO Unibank Inc.  “He’s moving assets from one to the other, liquidating those where he has made money, and financing opportunities that will eventually pay off like toll roads and airlines.” Completion of Ang’s plan to sell a 32.8- percent stake in Meralco and 49 percent of SMC Global Power Holdings Corp. would bring his asset sales in the past seven years to about $10 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. “If we can sell something, good,” Ang said Read More …

Jul 112013

MANILA (Mabuhay) – The government and a subsidiary of San Miguel Corp.(SMC) on Monday formally signed a P15-billion concession agreement to construct and operate the airport expressway. The concession agreement was signed by Public Works Secretary Rogelio L. Singson and SMC chief financial officer Ferdinand K. Constantino. San Miguel’s Optimal Infrastructure Development Inc. is building […]

Jun 052013
San Miguel releases P11B for NAIA Expressway project

MANILA, Philippines – The Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s (NAIA) Terminals 1 and 2 will soon be connected to the Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard and the Entertainment City casino complex after the San Miguel Corp. (SMC) released P11 billion for the construction of the NAIA Expressway Phase II project, the Palace announced on Wednesday. SMC made the payment through the SMC Vertex Tollways Development, Inc. after winning the bid last April 15. The Department of Public Works and Highways sent to SMC last May 6 the formal notice for award for the project. Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the project could start some time this month, to be divided in two phases. The proposed NAIA Expresssway has a total length of 7.15 kilometers, with the first phase expected to be completed in time for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in 2015. “Hopefully before APEC, that will be completed. There’s another phase which is II-B, which will connect the Skyway to the existing tollways,” Lacierda said. The P15.5-billion NAIA Expressway Phase II project is the third public-private partnership project to be successfully bidded out by the government, the Palace reported.

Jun 052013
San Miguel pays P11 billion for NAIA expressway project

MANILA, Philippines – The construction of the expressway for the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) could now start after conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) gave the P11-billion upfront payment to the government for the project, a Palace official announced on Wednesday. The company released the upfront payment through the SMC Vertex Tollways Development Inc., according to Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda. San Miguel won the P11-billion bid last April 15 and a formal notice for award was given by the Department of Public Works and Highways to the company last May 6. Lacierda said  that with the payment, the project could start sometime in June. The proposed NAIA Expressway, which has a total length of 7.15 kilometers, will connect the airport’s Terminals I and II to Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard and the Entertainment City casino complex. The project has two phases: Phase II-A and Phase II-B. The Cabinet official said Phase II-A will be completed in time for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in 2015.  Phase II-A will connect NAIA Terminals I and II through an elevated tollway structure to Roxas Boulevard and the Entertainment City, he said. “Hopefully before APEC, that will be completed. There’s another phase which is II-B, which will connect the Skyway to the existing tollways,” Lacierda said.

Mar 072013
Petron to issue $250-M hybrid notes

MANILA, Philippines – Fresh from raising $500 million in new funding, oil giant Petron Corp. is set to generate another $250 million through the issuance of hybrid notes for its refinery expansion program. “This is to advise that the company has priced the offering Wednesday night with an issue size of $250 million and expected issue date of March 11, 2013,” Petron told the local bourse. The notes, which carry a yield of 6.551 percent, will be consolidated with and form a single series with the $500-million securities issued on Feb. 6. “The transaction was executed nimbly against a strong market, with positive sentiment buoyed on the back of the Dow Jones touching a record high the previous day in the US,” the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. (HSBC) said. HSBC, Deutsche Bank, Standard Chartered and UBS were tapped as joint bookrunners and lead managers for the largest offshore perpetual in the Philippines. HSBC said the order books were oversubscribed, with total demand reaching $2.5 billion from more than 150 accounts. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 “A tap of the hybrids made sense for both investors who are looking for more Petron exposure, and for the issuer to raise cost effective funding to support its refinery master plan,” said HSBC Philippines president and CEO Wick Veloso. Early last month, the country’s largest oil refiner completed the sale of $500 million worth of dollar-denominated securities. Proceeds of the activity would be used to fund the company’s capital Read More …

Feb 072013
Big business can help fight poverty

UP economist Noel de Dios has a good idea on how to get more inclusive growth: get big business deeply involved in the fight against poverty. Since the bulk of our poverty stricken population are in the rural areas, get big business involved in agriculture. Noel, in a recent Business World column, argues his point: “A leap in productivity and incomes among today’s poor can come only by linking them with those who already possess exceptional access to knowledge and resources. If one speaks of agriculture, for example, this cannot be done without inducing major corporate businesses – those already inserted in national and global value-chains – to enter agriculture in a big way and include the poor in their plans.” Indeed, all the Corporate Social Responsibility activities of the large corporations are only self serving feel good press releases unless the outcome makes dramatic transformations in the lives of those at the bottom of the pyramid. As Noel puts it, “only large infusions of capital, technology, and market intelligence from the private sector can transform the conditions of the poor today.” But Noel knows things are always easier said than done specially in this country. Thus, he points out that “for all this to occur, difficult questions must first be answered: What policies and regulations hinder the entry of private capital and technology in agriculture? (Here one must wonder what hinders conglomerates like Metro Pacific, San Miguel, SM, and Ayala from becoming more involved in commercial agriculture rather than Read More …