A UNIT of Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) gained control of Indonesian infrastructure firm PT Nusantara Infrastructure Tbk after increasing its stake to more than 50%.
In a disclosure to the stock exchange on Tuesday, MPTC’s parent Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) said PT Metro Pacific Tollways Indonesia (PT MPTI) acquired an additional 760 million shares in PT Nusantara, or 4.99% of the company’s total issued capital stock on a fully diluted basis.
The transaction, valued at a total of P597.33 million, or 79 centavos per share, was executed through a cross sale on the Indonesian Stock Exchange.
This brings PT MPTI’s stake in PT Nusantara to 53.26%, solidifying its control of the company that has interests in tollroads, water, energy, port operations, and telecommunications.
“The transaction is expected to enhance profitability and strengthen the balance sheet of MPTC,” the listed parent company said.
Since PT MPTI now holds a majority of PT Nusantara’s shares, the company is required to conduct a mandatory tender offer to its minority stockholders. The minority shareholders collectively own 44.21% of PT Nusantara’s outstanding capital stock, with the balance of 2.53% held as treasury shares.
The company expects the tender offer price to be at around 79 centavos per share or 211 Indonesian Rupiah (IDR). With this, the entire tender offer size could reach IDR 1,421 billion or around P5.29 billion. The final tender offer price will require approval from the Indonesian Financial Services Authority.
PT MPTI said it will secure bank loans to finance the acquisition of the additional shares as well as the tender offer.
The listed infrastructure conglomerate initially owned 42.25% of PT Nusantara through a partnership with MPT Asia Corp. and PT MPTI. It further increased its interest in PT Nusantara to about 47.08% last November.
PT Nusantara operates a total of 34.47 kilometers in toll roads in Indonesia. The investment in the firm forms part of MPIC’s plan to expand its tollway business in Southeast Asia.
MPIC currently has a presence in Thailand through a 29.45% stake in Don Muang Tollway Public Company Limited in Bangkok. In Vietnam, it also holds a 44.9% stake in CII Bridges and Roads in Ho Chi Minh City.
Locally, MPIC operates three major tollways under MPTC, namely the North Luzon Expresssway (NLEx), Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway, and Cavite Expressway. MPTC has three other toll roads under construction: Cavite-Laguna Expressway, the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway, and the NLEx-South Luzon Expressway Connector Road.
The conglomerate booked a consolidated core net income of P3.6 billion in the first quarter of 2018, 16% higher year on year on the back of better than expected volume growth in its business units.
MPIC is one of three key Philippine units of Hong Kong-based First Pacific Co. Ltd., with the others being Philex Mining Corp. and PLDT, Inc. Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls.
Shares in MPIC went up five centavos or 1.08% to close at P4.67 each at the stock exchange on Tuesday. — Arra B. Francia