ALI caps 51% control of Tutuban owner

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With railway plans, benefits to the area seen

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AYALA Land Inc. (ALI) has finalized its long-held plan to take a controlling stake in Prime Orion Philippines Inc. (POPI), owner of Tutuban Center. The market is the Philippines’ bustling bargain haven that sits on a prime 20-hectare Manila property called Divisoria.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange on Friday, the listed property giant said it has executed a deed of subscription to 2.5 billion common shares of stock, or a little over 51 percent, of POPI, for a sum of P5.63 billion.

With the subscription priced at P2.25 per share, ALI said it paid 25 percent of the total subscription price, or P1.406 billion, also on Friday, the day it filed the disclosure.

ALI said it would pay the remaining 75 percent upon fulfillment of certain terms and conditions.

Meanwhile, POPI is set to increase its authorized capital stock from P2.4 to P7.5 billion to cover ALI’s capital infusion.

“To implement the ALI subscription, POPI shall file with the SEC an application for increase of its authorized capital stock from P2.4 billion to P7.5 billion, divided into 7.5 million common shares of stock, with par value of P1.00 per share,” POPI said in a separate disclosure to the bourse also on Friday.

At the same time, POPI said it has elected new officers from ALI into its board of directors, particularly, Bernard Vincent Dy as chairman of the board and Jose Emmanuel Jalandoni as president.

In August 2015, ALI announced its plans of acquiring POPI, saying the acquisition is “aligned with ALI’s thrust of expanding its leasing business.”

For its part, POPI said the agreement would benefit the firm’s property assets, especially its Tutuban Center, which sits on a 20-hectare property that will host the North South Railway Project Transfer Station, which will be linked with the LRT 2 West Station.

“With the entry of ALI, POPI will be able to benefit from the expertise and resources of ALI and optimize the development of its property assets, especially Tutuban Center,” POPI said in a disclosure in August 2015.

Late last year, ALI and POPI agreed to extend the due diligence period for the planned acquisition up to December 17, 2015, giving ALI more time to study the deal. (See The Manila Times November 20, 2015.)

POPI is a developer engaged in the property and retail business. Its subsidiary, Tutuban Properties Inc., owns the Tutuban Center in downtown Manila.

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