D.M. WENCESLAO & Associates, Inc. (DMWAI) grew its earnings by 9% in the first quarter, thanks to strong revenues from its office leasing business.

In a regulatory filing, the listed property developer reported its net profit attributable to equity holders of the parent company stood at P507.1 million, higher than the P466 million recorded a year ago.

This was supported by a 12.6% growth in revenues to P596.6 million during the period, which was attributed to “higher office lease rates and increased percentage of residential project

Recurring revenues, which accounted for 83% of the total revenues, jumped 9% to P493.9 million. This included rentals from land, building, and common use service area fees.

By segment, leasing of land went up 4% to P255.2 million, while rentals of buildings rose by 16.8% to P193.5 million from P165.6 million.

Sale of residential condominiums increased ninefold to P100 million in the January to March period.

DMWAI said that even though no new commercial buildings are to be completed this year, the office leasing segment showed double-digit growth due to “solid underlying pricing of negotiated lease renewal rates.”

Aseana One, which was completed in 2012, saw a 40% year-on-year increase in average lease rates to P870 per square meter (sq.m.) from P620 per sq.m.

“Current and long-term trends continue to move our way and we are positioned to capture the opportunities behind them,” Delfin Angelo C. Wenceslao, chief executive officer of DMWAI, said in a statement.

“Our residential segment will remain the main growth driver for the rest of the year following the steady progress of our project completion and ongoing pre-selling activities. As of April 30, our pre-sales of MidPark Towers have reached P3.6 billion from P2.8 billion reported in mid-February. Growth momentum will also come from land sale,” he added.

During the quarter, the company began building two new projects, Parqal and MidPark Towers, which are both located in its flagship project, Aseana City in Parañaque City. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang