Republic Cement expects profits to recover

By Krista A.M. MontealegreNational Correspondent

 Republic Cement’s Teresa Plant in Rizal

Republic Cement’s Teresa Plant in Rizal

REPUBLIC Cement and Building Materials, Inc. expects profits to recover this year after higher input costs and intense competition put pressure on margins in 2017, as Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc. (AEV) pursues the expansion of its business units.

“The jaw of the tiger is going the other way around. That has to turn, which we think it will,” Sabin M. Aboitiz, president and chief executive officer of Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc., said in a briefing in Makati City on Monday.

“I think it has hit the bottom (last year).”

The income contribution of Republic Cement to AEV fell by more than half to P671 million last year from P1.6 billion a year ago, dragged by lower prices and increased production costs that eroded margins.

Republic Cement set aside $300 million for increasing the capacity of all its integrated plants in Luzon and Mindanao, both milling and clinker production.

“As we invest in new plants, all of that improves our margins,” Mr. Aboitiz said.

Demand continues to grow, buoyed by the higher spending from the government and private sector.

Aboitiz InfraCapital is not participating in the public auction of the operation and maintenance of the Clark International Airport in Pampanga.

“We’re not ready for Clark. We’re focusing on the regional airports and (the Ninoy Aquino International Airport),” Mr. Aboitiz said. AEV is part of the “super consortium” of the country’s biggest conglomerates that filed a P350-billion proposal to rehabilitate the country’s main gateway.

Abotiz InfraCapital is also drafting a master plan for its national strategy on water investments. Apo Agua Infrastructura, Inc.’s Davao City Bulk Water Supply Project is in the final stages of its documentary requirements, with the Department of Agrarian Reform set to conduct site inspection soon.

Pilmico Foods Corp. plans to venture into the retail market through the firm’s egg and meat depot in Tarlac, which opened in the fourth quarter last year.

Two more depots are currently in the pipeline, with the aim of giving customers direct access to quality Pilmico Farms products, Mr. Aboitiz said.

Aboitiz Land, Inc. is continuing its expansion in Luzon and Mindanao. The Outlets at Lipa, a commercial retail development, aims to open in the first half, and plans are underway to develop a mid-market residential project in Mindanao, Aboitiz Land First Vice-President of Operations Rafa F. de Mesa said.

UnionBank aims to sustain its digital innovation initiatives, focusing on the transformation of existing branches. This year, the bank is studying the possibility of building 10 “lite” versions of The Ark, the lender’s fully digital concept branch.

“Our outlook remains positive as we remain committed to growing and expanding our businesses while keeping within our financial and risk parameters that are approved by the board and disclosed to shareholders,” AEV President and Chief Executive Officer Erramon I. Aboitiz said.

This year, AEV and its subsidiaries are budgeting P77.6 billion in capital expenditures, taking advantage of the vibrant growth opportunities at home and abroad.

Shares in AEV were unchanged at P62.45 each on Monday.

SOURCE: http://bworldonline.com/republic-cement-expects-profits-to-recover/

Cebu airport drives Megawide earnings higher

Megawide-construction-corp.jpg

MEGAWIDE Construction Corp. delivered an 8% improvement in its attributable profit for the first three months of 2018, driven by the double-digit top-line growth from its airport business which offset the seasonally slow construction segment.

In a regulatory filing, the listed firm reported a net income attributable to the parent of P475.29 million, higher than the P439.98 million it posted in the same period a year ago.

Revenues, however, slipped by 6.67% to P4.45 billion, following the slowdown in contract revenues seen for the period. Its construction business accounted for 84% of total revenues, or P3.7 billion, 11% lower year on year. Megawide attributed this decline to the cyclical nature of the construction business segment.

The infrastructure and engineering conglomerate’s order book includes 8990 Holdings, Inc.’s Ortigas Extension project, and DoubleDragon Properties Corp.’s Ascott-DD Meridian Park and Double Dragon Tower Phase 3.

Megawide managed to secure P13.3 billion worth of new contracts during the first quarter, already 124% of the total new contracts it bagged in 2017. It has been tapped to construct the Clark International Airport’s expansion, while other projects are mostly in the private sector namely Gateway Mall 2 Hotel, Golden Bay Tower, Taft East Gate, and Space Ubelt.

“The push of the government’s Build, Build, Build program is a key revenue driver for our construction business. Given our competitive advantage as a Quadruple A contractor, a concession operator and a fully integrated engineering company, we are in the best position to participate in these projects,” Megawide Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer Edgar B. Saavedra said in a statement.

Meanwhile, the airport segment accounted for the remaining 16% of Megawide’s total revenues or P646.1 million, up 13% year on year. Passenger volume picked up by 11% for the period, with international arrivals accelerating by 14% and domestic passengers by 10%. This resulted to a 37% increase in net income to P369.7 million, with profit margin reaching 57% from 48% the prior year.

Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) handled 2.7 million passengers in the first quarter, 65% of which were domestic while 35% were international arrivals. The company benefited from its addition of new airlines, international flights to Busan and Guangzhou, and domestic routes to Ormoc and Catbalogan (via Biliran) for the period.

By the end of the quarter, MCIA had a total of eight local and 17 international airline partners, plying 32 domestic and 22 international destinations.

“The solid performance of our airport segment will be supported by the completion of Terminal 2 in June of this year. This will open more opportunities to steer this segment to even greater heights. Thriving tourism will also help boost growth as we position MCIA as the country’s main tourist hub with its strategic geographic location at the center of the Philippines,” Mr. Saavedra said.

GMR Megawide Cebu Airport Corp. (GMCAC) is set to start commissioning the new passenger terminal of the MCIA on June 22. MCIA is targeting a 12% increase in passenger traffic to 11.2 million this year, from 10 million in 2017.

GMCAC won the contract for the P17.52-billion MCIA Passenger Terminal Building project under the Aquino administration’s flagship public-private partnership program, and the concession to develop MCIA for a period of 25 years.

Shares in Megawide went up by P1 or 4.8% to P21.85 each at the Philippine Stock Exchange on Monday. — Arra B. Francia

SOURCE: http://bworldonline.com/cebu-airport-drives-megawide-earnings-higher/

TRAIN boosts tax collection by P12.5 billion in Q1

By Mary Grace Padin

MANILA, Philippines — The implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law helped the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) boost its collections by P12.5 billion in the first three months, the agency said yesterday.

 According to data presented by the BIR during a hearing at the House of Representatives, collections due to the TRAIN Law recorded a net gain of P12.5 billion in the first quarter.

According to data presented by the BIR during a hearing at the House of Representatives, collections due to the TRAIN Law recorded a net gain of P12.5 billion in the first quarter.

According to data presented by the BIR during a hearing at the House of Representatives, collections due to the TRAIN Law recorded a net gain of P12.5 billion in the first quarter.

This was a reversal from the P3.2 billion net loss programmed by the government during the first quarter of implementing the law.

Broken down, revenue losses from personal income tax collections reached only P23.34 billion in the first quarter, lower than the expected revenue loss of P36.04 billion.

“We can only surmise that some of this or the balance can be attributable to our field performance, especially the enforcement processes in our revenue regions,” BIR assistant commissioner Alfredo Misajon said during the hearing of the Congressional Oversight Committee on the Comprehensive Tax Reform Program.

There was also a P3 billion decrease in the value-added tax (VAT) collections from January to March, in contrast with the expected gain of P4.21 billion.

Gains from petroleum excise tax amounted to P4.73 billion, lower than the P9.99 billion goal; while automobile excise tax climbed by P363.71 million, also lower than expected.

On the other hand, the increase in the excise tax on tobacco due to TRAIN during the period was significantly higher than expected at P14.97 billion, as compared to the P686 million goal.

Misajon said this is due to unchanged consumption behavior of smokers, and frontloading on the part of the manufacturers in anticipation for higher excise taxes.

Excise tax collection on sugar-sweetened beverages was mostly on target with P7.7 billion actual collection as compared to the P7.78 billion goal.

The TRAIN Law, as contained in Republic Act 10963, aims to simplify the country’s tax system by lowering personal income tax rates.

It also seeks to adjust excise taxes of fuel, automobile, coal and sugar-sweetened beverages, and expand the tax base by removing value-added tax exemptions.

BIR collections amounted to P423.08 billion in the first quarter, 14.16 percent higher than the 370.61 billion recorded in the same period in 2017.

This was also 16.95 percent higher than the P361.77 billion target for the period.


Read more at https://www.philstar.com/business/2018/05/17/1815832/train-boosts-tax-collection-p125-billion-q1#wFTToPSfCimyK6FS.99

Megaworld and SMDC win big at PH’s biggest real estate awards

 The Winners and Highly Commended of the 4th Philippines Property Awards 2016

The Winners and Highly Commended of the 4th Philippines Property Awards 2016

Megaworld Corporation took home its first ­ever Best Developer award as well as three more gongs and 13 Highly Commended honours at the fourth annual Philippines Property Awards gala dinner.

The Dr Andrew L Tan­led company started the evening with an unprecedented 16 nominations, with Uptown Bonifacio getting six nods. The high ­end urban township eventually won Best Residential Architectural Design for the Uptown Ritz condominium development.

Last year’s Best Developer winner SM Group was nominated for 10 awards through its various subsidiaries and eventually took home Best Commercial Development (Philippines) for SM Seaside City Cebu, a retail project undertaken by its commercial investment arm, SM Prime Holdings Inc.

The Winners and Highly Commended of the 4th Philippines Property Awards 2016

Megaworld Corporation took home its first ­ever Best Developer award as well as three more gongs and 13 Highly Commended honours at the fourth annual Philippines Property Awards gala dinner.

The Dr Andrew L Tan­led company started the evening with an unprecedented 16 nominations, with Uptown Bonifacio getting six nods. The high ­end urban township eventually won Best Residential Architectural Design for the Uptown Ritz condominium development.

Last year’s Best Developer winner SM Group was nominated for 10 awards through its various subsidiaries and eventually took home Best Commercial Development (Philippines) for SM Seaside City Cebu, a retail project undertaken by its commercial investment arm, SM Prime Holdings Inc.

The conglomerate, headed by Henry Sy Sr, the country’s richest man, also won the coveted Special Recognition in CSR for providing Filipinos “five ­star” homes in prime locations around the country, as well as promoting a conducive learning experience for the youth by building and remodelling overpopulated public school classrooms across the islands.

Presented by Hansgrohe, the fourth edition of the Philippines Property Awards 2016 welcomed a new category to reward the country’s outstanding boutique developers. In the category for Best Boutique Developer, AppleOne Properties Inc pipped King Properties. Fellow Cebu­based firms, Primary Homes Inc and Cebu Landmasters Inc, collected several Winners and Highly Commended accolades in other categories.

 Manny Villar, chairman of Vista Land group, receives the 2016 Real Estate Personality award from Property Report editor-in-chief Liam Aran Barnes

Manny Villar, chairman of Vista Land group, receives the 2016 Real Estate Personality award from Property Report editor-in-chief Liam Aran Barnes

With this year’s entries doubling to more than 200 compared to 2015, the time has come to widen the scope of the programme, a move that was welcomed by the independent panel of judges and trusted awards supervisor BDO.

“Whilst there’s still an emphasis on Metro Manila, there was an increase in the number of entries from Cebu and also Davao,” said Lindsay J Orr, chief operating officer of Jones Lang LaSalle Philippines and chairman of the judges. “What we need to do now is to continue to bang the drums and build the awareness for the Philippines Property Awards so that next year we make sure that we’ll have an even larger section of entries from other regions.”

Another highlight of the ceremony was the presentation to former Senate President Manuel B Villar Jr, founder of the Vista Land Group, of the Real Estate Personality of the Year award by the editors of Property Report. It was the only award not selected by the independent judging panel.

Known for his master planned developments called “Communicities,” the self­made billionaire saw his construction supplies business in the early 1970s grow into a quality housing developer.

“I am deeply grateful for, and profoundly humbled y, this recognition from the Philippines Property Awards,” said Villar. “or me, the Real Estate Personality of the Year award is a testament to how Vista Land has been an instrument in improving the lives of Filipinos by providing them homes to live comfortably and communities where necessities are within their reach. “

Proving his company’s worth as a quality housing specialist, Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc took home the Best Housing Development (Philippines) award for Northpoint, located in Davao. This project beat all the residential category winners from across the nation and, along with the other ‘best of the best’ winners from the Philippines, will move on to compete at the South East Asia Property Awards grand finale in Singapore this November.

“As the Asia Property Awards programme continues to grow in its 11th year, we are proud to accomplish our goal to showcase the finest developers and projects from the established and emerging locations in the Philippines,” says Terry Blackburn, founder of the Asia Property Awards and managing director of awards organiser PropertyGuru International. “We look forward to welcoming more entries from regional developers next year as we celebrate the achievements of Philippine real estate.”

 The Philippines Property Awards 2016 at the Fairmont Makati was attended by more than 200 C-level executives and top real estate professionals

The Philippines Property Awards 2016 at the Fairmont Makati was attended by more than 200 C-level executives and top real estate professionals

The rise of the country’s emerging markets was featured prominently at the Property Report Congress Philippines, a high­level forum that discussed the past, present and future of the local real estate industry.

It was the first time that the Congress took place in the country after the successful debut in Singapore in 2015. The Philippine conference preceded the black­tie gala gala dinner at the Fairmont Makati and was joined by experts from all over the archipelago and further afield, including current and former Winners and Judges from the Philippines Property Awards.

JLL Philippines’ Orr delivered the keynote address about the exciting prospects in the local market, whilst an in­depth workshop on digital marketing for Filipino real estate professionals was given by John W. Mims, chief connector and managing director of The Hunting Ridge Group. Other thought­provoking discussions covered the rise of branded residences, the crucial issue of infrastructure problems, the future of green building and the impact of technology in the Philippine property sector.

Full list of Winners and Highly Commended at the Philippines Property Awards 2016:

DEVELOPER

Best Developer (Philippines)

Winner: egaworld Corporation

Best Boutique Developer

Winner: ppleOne Properties Inc

Highly Commended:

King Properties

Special Recognition in CSR

Winner: M Development Corporation (SMDC)

BEST OF THE BEST

Best Green Development

Winner: rthaland Century Pacific Tower by ArthaLand

Winner: enarco Tower by Menarco Development Corp

Best Commercial Development (Philippines)

Winner: M Seaside City Mall by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Best Housing Development (Philippines)

Winner: orthpoint by Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc

Best Condo Development (Philippines)

Winner: cqua Private Residences by Century Properties Group Inc

DEVELOPMENT

Best Luxury Condo Development (Metro Manila)

Winner: dmiral Grand Suites by Anchor Land Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

Uptown Ritz by Megaworld Corporation

Best Mid­Range Condo Development (Metro Manila)

Winner: cqua Private Residences by Century Properties Group Inc

Highly Commended:

Salcedo Square by Vista Residences (Vista Land Group)

Sorrento Oasis by Filinvest Land Inc

The Residences Commonwealth by Century Properties Group Inc

Best Affordable Condo Development (Metro Manila)

Winner: acienda Balai North Quezon City by Phinma Properties

Highly Commended:

Grace Residences by SM Development Corporation (SMDC)

Suntrust Shanata by Suntrust Properties Inc by Megaworld Corporation

Trees Residences by SM Development Corporation (SMDC)

Best Condo Development (Cebu)

Winner: Newtown Boulevard by Megaworld Corporation

Highly Commended:

AppleOne Banawa Heights by AppleOne Properties Inc

Avenir by King Properties

Mabolo Garden Flats by Primary Homes Inc

The Courtyards at Brookridge by Primary Homes Inc

Best Housing Development (Cebu)

Winner: olare by Primary Homes Inc

Highly Commended:

Casa Mira Linao by Cebu Landmasters Inc

Velmiro Heights by Cebu Landmasters Inc

Best Residential Development (Davao)

Winner: orthpoint by Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc

Highly Commended:

One Lakeshore Drive by Suntrust Properties Inc by Megaworld Corporation

Best Condo Development (Resort)

Winner: he Vineyard Residences by Global­Estate Resorts Inc by Megaworld Corporation

Best Housing Development (Resort)

Winner: amella Palawan by Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc

Highly Commended:

Royal Palms Dos by Primary Homes Inc

Best Hotel Development

Winner: onrad Manila by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

Admiral Hotel by Anchor Land Holdings Inc

Army Navy Club Restoration and Development by Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corp

Marriott Courtyard Hotel by Megaworld Corporation

Best Office Development

Winner: re Central by Monte de Tesoro Corp

Highly Commended:

Arthaland Century Pacific Tower by ArthaLand

FiveE­ComCenter by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Menarco Tower by Menarco Development Corp

Best Retail Development

Winner: M Seaside City Cebu by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

Uptown Mall by Megaworld Corporation

DESIGN

Best Residential Architectural Design

Winner: ptown Ritz by Megaworld Corporation

Highly Commended:

Salcedo Square by Vista Residences (Vista Land Group)

Uptown Parksuites by Megaworld Corporation

Best Residential Interior Design

Winner: dmiral Grand Suites by Anchor Land Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

8 Newtown Boulevard by Megaworld Corporation

Salcedo Skysuites by Megaworld Corporation

Best Retail Architectural Design

Winner: M Seaside City Cebu by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

The Venice Grand Canal Mall by Megaworld Corporation

Uptown Mall by Megaworld Corporation

Best Office Architectural Design

Winner: rthaLand Century Pacific Tower by ArthaLand

Highly Commended:

FiveE­ComCenter by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Ore Central by Monte de Tesoro Corp

Uptown Tower 3 by Megaworld Corporation

Best Hotel Architectural Design

Winner: onrad Manila by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

Admiral Hotel by Anchor Land Holdings Inc

Army Navy Club Restoration and Development by Oceanville Hotel and Spa Corp

Best Hotel Interior Design

Winner: onrad Manila by SM Prime Holdings Inc

Highly Commended:

Marriott Courtyard Hotel by Megaworld Corporation

Best Landscape Architectural Design

Winner: re Central by Monte de Tesoro Corp

Highly Commended:

8 Newtown Boulevard by Megaworld Corporation

SM Seaside City Cebu by SM Prime Holdings Inc

PUBLISHER’S CHOICE

Real Estate Personality of the Year

Manuel B. Villar Jr.

Chairman of the Board, Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc

For more information about the Philippines Property Awards, visit the official website: AsiaPropertyAwards.com/philippines­property­awards/

Read more: http://business.inquirer.net/209409/megaworld-and-smdc-win-big-at-phs-most-celebrated-real-estate-awards#ixzz5FctGaxGb 
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Japan firms to fix MRT3 starting next month

By Miguel R. Camus

The busy Metro Rail Transit Line 3, which had grabbed headlines for constant breakdowns in recent years, could be restored to its original condition in two and a half years, the Department of Transportation said on Tuesday.

The DOTr, for the first time, released details of a plan to tap Japanese companies to rehabilitate and maintain the almost two decades-old MRT3, which runs along the crucial Edsa in Metro Manila.

The DOTr said it hosted last week officials from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) during a so-called appraisal mission. The event covered technical matters on the size, scope and project cost of the MRT-3 rehabilitation project.

Based on those discussions, the DOTr said the project would cost an estimated 34.48 billion yen or close to P17 billion.

The rehabilitation and maintenance will take some 43 months. It said 31 months were allocated “for the simultaneous rehabilitation and maintenance works to restore MRT3 to its original design condition and capacity.” The remaining 12 months would be for a so-called defect liability period.

The DOTr said the new maintenance and rehabilitation provider would begin work starting this June. The loan signing is also targeted for next month.

While it did not name the provider, the DOTr in previous statements said they were considering the tandem of Sumitomo Corp. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Mitsubishi-Sumitomo handled maintenance operations for the MRT3’s first 12 years of operations.

The project scope will include the MRT3’s power supply system, overhead catenary system, radio system, CCTV system, public address system, signaling system, rail tracks, road rail vehicles, depot equipment, elevators and escalators and other station building equipment, the DOTr noted.

The DOTr may eventually allow the private sector to assume operations of the MRT3. Metro Pacific Investments Corp. last year bagged original proponent status for its P12.5-billion offer to rehabilitate, operate and maintain the MRT3 for a period of 30 years.

Once approved by the National Economic and Development Authority, Metro Pacific’s offer will be subjected to a competitive challenge.

The DOTr is finalizing the results of an audit to determine whether it could use 48 train coaches supplied by Chinese company CRRC Dalian. It earlier tapped Germany’s TUV Rheinland as independent consultant for the audit.

John Batan, DOTr undersecretary for railways, said previously that the TUV Rheinland results would “guide” the DOTr in the scope of works to be undertaken by the Japanese providers.


Read more: http://business.inquirer.net/250922/japan-firms-fix-mrt3-starting-next-month#ixzz5FcsIZJC5 
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