THE LUCIO Co-led Cosco Capital Inc. plans to invest up to P2.4 billion to put up six Cosco community malls in the next two years.
Leonardo Dayao, Cosco president, told The Manila Times in a phone interview that the first two Cosco malls will rise in Nueva Ecija and Marikina City in line with its masterplan to build a total of six malls in the next two years.
“The Marikina mall is one of our six community malls that we plan to build in the next two years. This is the second community mall after the one in Nueva Ecija,” Dayao said.
The company acquired last year the NE Pacific Shopping Centers Corp., the largest mall operator in Cabanatuan City, according to Dayao.
The Cosco Community Mall chain is the company’s vehicle to compete in the community mall sector. It will compete against DoubleDragon Properties Corp.’s CityMall chain.
“Our projected investments per community mall is roughly at P400 million, so it’s about P2.4-billion for the six malls,” Dayao said.
Cosco has recently signed a 14-year land lease agreement with the Tancheco family to lease a 7,168 square meters (sqm) of land located along Marikina Heights in Marikina City, where the second Cosco community mall will rise. The mall will start construction in first quarter of next year.
Dayao said Cosco will own the mall chain, which will be called Cosco Community Mall. He also said the company is expecting to acquire four more land areas in the provinces.
“The mall chain is going to be biased for provincial locations. But if there are opportunities, we will also build (malls) in Metro Manila,” the Cosco president said.
Dayao said the company is looking to acquire 3,000- to 10,000-sqm of land for each of the six malls. He also said that each of the planned malls will have a gross floor area of 5,000 to 7,000 sqm.
Incorporated in 1988, Cosco is the holding firm of business magnate Lucio Co, which has interests in retail (Puregold Price Club Inc.), real estate (Ellimac Prime Holdings Inc. etc), liquor distribution (Premier Wine and Spirits Inc.), liquefied petroleum gas and mining. KRISTYN NIKA M. LAZO