Dennis Uy still open to PXP Energy tie-up

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BUSINESSMAN Dennis A. Uy is open to revisiting plans with PXP Energy Corp. for a potential oil exploration venture once government relations with China improve.

“We both agreed to not pursue it because of the uncertainty of the government to government. But we agreed to revisit it once there’s an opportunity,” Mr. Uy told reporters last week after the stockholders’ meeting of another company he leads.

PXP Energy and Mr. Uy’s Dennison Holdings Corp. entered into a subscription agreement in October 2018 where the former will issue 340 million common shares priced at P11.85 each to the latter for a total of P4.029 billion.

In exchange, Dennison Holdings was to give PXP Energy or any of its affiliate companies preferential rights to acquire up to 49% in Phoenix Petroleum Philippines Corp.’s share in its joint venture with China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) for the development of a liquefied natural gas project.

Both parties, however, announced the termination of the deal last March, highlighting that the decision was mutual. Dennison Holdings withdrew its P40-million downpayment for the deal following its suspension.

Mr. Uy noted that PXP Energy Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan has committed to invite the company once government relations progress.

Prior to the termination of the deal, Phoenix Petroleum and CNOOC Gas and Power Group Co. Ltd. signed a memorandum of understanding with state-owned Philippine National Oil Co. for their equity investment in Tanglawan Philippine LNG, Inc.

The Tanglawan project is set to break ground within the year in time for its completion in 2023. It is seen to have an annual capacity of 2.2 metric tons of the regasification and receiving terminal.

On the other hand, Mr. Uy said there are plans to pursue the follow-on offering for his holding firm Udenna Corp. within a year’s time.

“We’re working on it. Baka in a year’s time, depende sa regulator (Maybe in a year’s time, depending on the regulator),” Mr. Uy said.

Udenna is in the process of conducting a share swap with listed firm ISM Communications Corp., which will involve the issuance of 24.058 million ISM shares to shareholders of Udenna in exchange for two billion Udenna shares.

ISM’s public float will fall to about 10% after the share swap. The company earlier said the target would be to increase public ownership to 15-20% during the secondary offering.

At the same time, ISM has proposed to increase its authorized capital stock to P75 billion from P2.8 billion to support Udenna’s entry. ISM’s name will then be changed to Udenna Holdings Corp.

The transaction is still pending approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Udenna’s business interests include fuel and oil, telecommunications, logistics, hospitality, education, and convenience stores. — Arra B. Francia