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 …

Dec 182013
Tan, SMC to finalize PAL stake sale next yr

MANILA, Philippines – Negotiations for the sale of the majority stake in flag carrier Philippine Airlines Inc. (PAL) with San Miguel Corp. (SMC) are expected to be finalized by next year. PAL chairman and chief executive officer Lucio Tan told reporters in a chance interview yesterday that his group is in talks with SMC for the sale of the 51-percent stake in the airline. He said he expects the negotiations for the sale to be completed “by early next year.” Should Tan’s group decide to sell its 51-percent stake to SMC, the carrier will become wholly-owned by SMC which currently holds a 49-percent share. In April last year, SMC infused $500 million for the purchase of a 49-percent equity interest in Trustmark Holdings Corp. Trustmark owns 97.71 percent of the airline’s parent firm PAL Holdings Inc., which owns 84.67 percent of PAL through PR Holdings Inc. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 The carrier has embarked on a refleeting program since SMC’s entry. The refleeting program involves the acquisition of 100 new aircraft in preparation for its flights to Europe and additional flights to the US. PAL expects to save as much $400 million from fuel and maintenance costs each year as part of the refleeting program. It now operates a fleet of 48 aircraft composed of 10 Airbus 330-300, 12 A320-200, eight 340-300, five A321-231, four A319-100, five Boeing 777-300ER and four 747-400.

Nov 072013
SMC’s biggest stockholder going into coal

LONDON – The single largest shareholder in diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) is venturing into coal projects in the Philippines. Top Frontier Investment Holdings Inc. wants to take advantage of low valuation on coal projects to expand its existing portfolio of nickel, gold and copper projects, its top executive said. “I think Top Frontier has quite a good investment at the moment and of course, it can invest more on coal projects,” said Top Frontier president and CEO Ramon S. Ang. Ang said Top Frontier can benefit from soft coal prices that result in low valuation of coal projects. Global coal prices have dropped significantly due to oversupply, making it one of the worst-performing bulk commodities this year. “So, I think there’s an opportunity for us to invest in that business,” he stressed. Top Frontier is backed by former Trade Minister Roberto V. Ongpin, businessman Iñigo U. Zobel, condiments king Jose Y. Campos and Ang, who is also SMC president and chief operating officer. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 Top Frontier, through fully-owned subsidiary Clariden Holdings Inc., holds the mining rights for the Nonoc nickel project in Surigao del Norte, Mt. Cadig nickel project and Lo-oc limestone project. It also owns exploration permits for certain areas under the Bango gold project. A subsidiary of Clariden Holdings was also chosen as the contractor under a joint operating agreement to be executed for the North Davao project. In 2012, Clariden Holdings posted P2.66 billion in revenues and Read More …

Aug 122013
Huge forex losses drag SMC to P2.4-B loss

MANILA, Philippines – Huge foreign exchange losses dragged diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) into the red in the first semester. “Including unrealized forex losses, net loss attributable to the equity holders of the parent company amounted to P2.4 billion,” the food-to-power conglomerate said in a regulatory filing. In contrast, SMC posted a net income of P14.12 in the first semester of 2012. SMC said the strengthening of the dollar against the peso “resulted in foreign exchange losses of P10.2 billion in June dragging the company’s overall performance for the (first half).” However, excluding unrealized forex losses, SMC’s recurring net income hit P7.8 billion in the January to June period. “Forex losses mask the solid performance we had in our businesses. But we remain bullish about our underlying performance, which we attribute to a series of competitive advantages that should help us moving forward,” said SMC chairman and CEO Eduardo M. Cojuangco Jr. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 In the first half, the diversified conglomerate’s revenues reached P357.5 billion, up nine percent from last year due to strong performances from food subsidiary San Miguel Pure Foods and Petron Malaysia, which was consolidated into the the SMC Group in April 2012. SMC said its operating income picked up 19 percent to P28.9 billion “brought about by lower generation costs from SMC Global Power Corp. and growth in volumes in the food group’s operations.” Specifically, it benefited from favorable prices of raw materials on the back of higher 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 222013
SMC taps DM Consunji for P10.5-B eng’g proj

MANILA, Philippines – D.M. Consunji Inc., the construction unit of the Consunji family’s listed investment arm DMCI Holdings Inc., bagged a P10.5 billion engineering and  construction contract for the NAIA (Ninoy Aquino International Airport) expressway phase II project. In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, DMCI said D.M. Consunji has signed an agreement with Vertex Tollways Development Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of San Miguel Holdings Corp., for the engineering, procurement and construction contract for a project that will link the capital’s main airport terminals to Entertainment City along Roxas Boulevard. When asked for comment, DMCI Holdings chief financial officer Herbert Consunji said the contract is worth around P10.5 billion. The contract involves about 2.2 kilometers of at grade works within the Entertainment City area and about five kilometer four-lane elevated and viaduct connecting to the existing Skyway. DMCI said the phase II works comprise the design and construction of the viaduct extension from the existing phase 1 to Roxas Boulevard, Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard and NAIA terminals 1 and 2 over the existing roads of Sales Road, Andrews Avenue, domestic airport road, NAIA road and Imelda Avenue and includes on and off ramps, connection ramps and provision of toll plazas. San Miguel had been given by the government until the end of the year to complete the detailed engineering for the toll road, which is estimated to cost around P15.52 billion. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 Construction is expected to take approximately two years with full Read More …

Jul 192013
Plunge in Meralco stocks dampens index

MANILA, Philippines – Profit taking and discounted sale of blue chip Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) dragged down the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) yesterday. The PSEi retreated 0.41 percent or 27.33 points to settle at 6,621.02, while the broader all shares index dropped 0.48 percent or 19.26 points to 4,032.08. Most active stock were mixed but the main index was dampened by the plunge in Meralco’s share price. Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) trimmed its 32.8-percent stake in the country’s largest power distributor. SMC sold 64.33 million Meralco shares at P270 apiece, representing a steep 10.71-percent discount compared with the previous closing price of P302.40. Top-traded Meralco lost 8.2 percent to end at P277.60 yesterday amid the heavily-discounted sale. Given the run-up of the benchmark index past the 6,600 level, some investors opted to book gains. Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1 The local stock market bucked another record high in Wall Street, which was driven by strong corporate earnings. The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 0.5 percent or 78.02 points to 15,548.54 while the broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 0.5 percent or 8.46 points to 1,689.37. Closer to home, Asian shares were mixed, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 shedding 1.48 percent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng inched up 0.03 percent. Locally, most counters were in the red, led by financial firms that slipped 0.98 percent or 15.72 points to 1,595.30. Mining and oil added 0.57 percent or 81.52 points to 14,369.94.