SM Group may tap $500-M borrowing


Although SM Investments Corp. (SMIC) has made it clear that it doesn’t need further fund raising for its projects yet, the holding firm for tycoon Henry Sy’s businesses is not closing its door to good financing deals.

During the 2nd Philippine Financial Forum, SMIC Chief Financial Officer Jose Sio said that now isn’t the right time for firms to borrow or sell shares. But in an interview with reporters, Sio clarified that the firm is not closing its doors to any financing possibilities.

“This isn’t the time for corporates to borrow or sell shares. For SM, it is still a waiting game to scout for investment opportunities,” Sio said during the forum.

After the forum, he told reporters that while the company doesn’t have any specific plans yet for any stock issuances, it may still tap around $500 million if good deals will emerge.

“We don’t need [to do issuances]but if you’ll give me money tomorrow, I will accept it,” Sio said.

“But if we are to go out, we have to go out big because if you go out small, people, hindi ka papansinin [people will not mind you],” Sio added.

He also specified that if the company was to tap loans, it should be “at least, $500 million” and long term.

“But there is no need to go out yet, we have enough,” Sio reiterated.

During the forum, he shared that SM’s property group is now doing a “no-deal roadshow” in Singapore, adding that it may also head to Europe next week to discuss consolidation and drum up foreign interest for the Philippines.

In the previous month, SM Group decided to merge its property businesses into one real-estate giant firm, with the surviving entity, SM Prime Holdings Inc., set to have the biggest market capitalization of about $14 billion in the country.

The boards of directors of SMIC and SM Prime annouanced that they are consolidating property-related businesses of SMIC, under SM Prime, the Philippines’ leading shopping mall owner and operator.


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