Ayala Corporation remains bullish in PH

GREAT RUN. u201cWe have been in no rush in expanding the portfolio overseas only because we have been overweight in the Philippines and the results speak for themselves. It has been a great run for us over the past 5 years,u201d Jaime Augusto Zobel De Ayala says. File photo by Rappler

GREAT RUN. u201cWe have been in no rush in expanding the portfolio overseas only because we have been overweight in the Philippines and the results speak for themselves. It has been a great run for us over the past 5 years,u201d Jaime Augusto Zobel De Ayala says.

File photo by Rappler

Speaking at Ayala Corporation’s annual shareholders’ meeting, on Friday, Aoril 10, Zobel De Ayala said the company is not rushing to invest outside the Philippines because of the significant growth opportunities in the country, particularly in the power and infrastructure sector.

“We have been in no rush in expanding the portfolio overseas only because we have been overweight in the Philippines and the results speak for themselves. It has been a great run for us over the past 5 years,” Zobel De Ayala said.

But he added the conglomerate’s management team understands that what is happening in Southeast Asia is of great interest.

“We do remain on the lookout for opportunities,” Zobel De Ayala said.

To date, the company’s water unit Manila Water Company Incorporated has ventured in Vietnam while its property unit Ayala Land has recently acquired 9.16% interest in Malaysian property firm.

Steep growth trajectory

For 2015, the conglomerate is setting aside P185 billion ($4.17 billion) in capital expenditures, primarily to finance expansion of its real estate and telecommunications businesses, as well as energy and infrastructure projects.

Over the past 5 years, the conglomerate’s capital spending has reached nearly P500 billion.

Zobel De Ayala said the conglomerate is now in a steeper growth trajectory. And as the economy continues to present attractive opportunities, it would continue to innovate to address new opportunities.

The company is poised to hit P20 billion ($450.60 million) in net income for this year, one year ahead of the plan.

The conglomerate is also open to more joint venture partnerships as the projects being bid out by the government become larger.

For instance, Ayala Land earlier partnered with 3 other property firms – SM Prime Holdings Incorporated, Megaworld Corporation, and Aboitiz Equity Incorporated  – to form a “super consortium” bidding for the P123-billion ($2.76-billion) Laguna Lakeshore expressway dike project.

It also won the P65-billion ($1.46-billion) redevelopment and extension of the Light Rail Transit line 1 (LRT1) Cavite extension project and the automated rail ticketing system in partnership with Metro Pacific Investments Corporation.

“As we get into much larger big ticket items, it makes sense for companies to come together. Increasingly, we have seen ourselves working with a consortium,” Zobel De Ayala said. – Rappler.com

$1 = P44.54