Listed conglomerate Ayala Corp. said it would focus on optimizing existing businesses, adopting “a highly disciplined approach” to capital deployment, and exploring fundraising activities for future ventures.

“We will fully support continued expansion of our core value drivers Ayala Land, Inc., BPI (Bank of the Philippine Islands), Globe Telecom, Inc., and AC Energy [Corp.] and scale up our emerging businesses in healthcare, education and logistics, “ Fernando Zobel de Ayala, incoming president and chief executive officer of Ayala Corp., said during the virtual stockholders’ meeting on Friday morning.

The Ayala group has allotted P196 billion in combined capital expenditures (capex) this year and expects to make “economic revival” by mid-2023.

Majority of the company’s 2021 capex will be funding Ayala Land’s residential launches and to support Globe Telecom’s infrastructure rollout.

“We are cautiously optimistic about the business environment and will continue to prepare for a post-pandemic economic recovery,” Mr. Zobel said.

Meanwhile, stockholders of Ayala Corp.’s real estate investment trust AREIT, Inc. have approved the increase in its authorized capital stock to P29.5 billion from P11.74 billion.

“The increase in capital stock would provide the company an opportunity to acquire property in exchange for shares and will allow us to further grow AREIT,” Elaine Marie F. Alzona, chief financial officer and chief compliance officer of AREIT, said in the company’s virtual stockholders’ meeting on Friday afternoon.

Stockholders also gave the go signal to approve Ayala Land’s subscription to 483.25 million primary common shares of AREIT in exchange for assets valued at P15.46 billion.

Ayala Corp. shares at the stock exchange went up by 1.28% or P9.50 to close at P754.50 each, while AREIT stocks improved by 0.15% to finish at P34.05 apiece. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte