Corporate News

Aboitiz unit bags new geothermal deals

Posted on December 16, 2013

AP RENEWABLES, Inc. (APRI) has bagged two new service contracts covering geothermal concession areas in Mindanao, an official from the Energy department said on Friday last week.

“Two geothermal service contracts were awarded to APRI,” Ariel D. Fronda, the department’s chief for Geothermal Energy Management Division, said in a text message. “These are Kapatagan-Sibulan and Talomo-Tico projects. Both in North Cotabato.”

Besides APRI, the department had also awarded a service contract to Basic Energy Corp. for a geothermal concession area in West Bulusan, Sorsogon, the company disclosed last week. The area hosts Mt. Bintacan, Mt. Tabon-Tabon, Mt. Sisigon, Mt. Malobago, Mt. Calomoutan and Mt. Sujac.

Energy Undersecretary Ramon Allan V. Oca had said in April that geothermal service contracts involve a five-year pre-development stage.

Afterwards, the developer has to declare commerciality to proceed to development phase.

The said phase can run from 25 to 50 years depending on the result of the exploration.

APRI is a unit of Aboitiz Power Corp. (AboitizPower). The firm acquired the Tiwi-MakBan geothermal plants -- located in Albay and Laguna -- through a bidding conducted by the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. in 2008 after it posted the winning bid amounting to $446.888 million. The company also owns the Negron-Cuadrado geothermal service contract which covers an area that straddles the provinces of Zambales and Pampanga.

Basic holds geothermal service contracts in Mabini, Batangas; Iriga, Camarines Sur; Mariveles, Bataan; and East Mankayan -- which cuts across three provinces in the Cordillera Administrative Region (Benguet, Mountain Province, Ifugao).

AboitizPower is the power generation and distribution arm of Aboitiz Group. Its net income declined 22.26% to P14.6 billion in the nine months to September from P18.78 billion in the same period last year. Basic, which is also involved in oil exploration in Mindoro and Sulu Sea, saw its bottom line swing to a P9.31-million net loss as of September from a P187.66-million net income in the same nine months last year.

Last Friday, shares of AboitizPower lost 20 centavos or 0.62% to close at P32.25 apiece, while those of Basic were last traded on Thursday at 23.5 centavos each. -- Claire-Ann Marie C. Feliciano