By Denise A. Valdez, Senior Reporter

PH RESORTS Group Holdings, Inc. may attract more investors in its follow-on public offering after pricing its shares at P1.68 each, but worries over the tourism industry’s recovery is likely to remain a concern for some.

The gaming and hospitality firm of businessman Dennis A. Uy has priced its shares at the lower end of its P1 to P2.50 per share price range, the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) said in a Friday disclosure.

PH Resorts will be doing a follow-on offering of up to 450 million common shares starting Wednesday until Oct. 28. With the final offer price, the company may generate up to P756 million from the offering.

“The price is rather attractive, however with current market conditions, investors will be considering whether the gaming industry will make a swift recovery should they partake,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a mobile message.

PH Resorts is doing an offering to generate funds that will support its resort project in Mactan, Cebu, the Emerald Bay casino and hotel.

“For the tourism & leisure industry, this business continues to suffer with limited operations due to the pandemic. Though restrictions have eased, operations are still [limited],” Diversified Securities, Inc. Equity Trader Aniceto K. Pangan said in a text message.

“At P1.68 per share, this is an attractive price for long term prospects, while short term [prospects] will continue to suffer a negative sentiment among investors,” he added.

PH Resorts recorded an attributable net loss of P277.07 million in the first six months of 2020, expanding from P169.15 million last year, as it temporarily closed its Panglao resort amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Emerald Bay, the company’s flagship project for which the proceeds of its follow-on offering will be used, aims to do a soft opening by end-2021. The project will feature 146 gaming tables, 729 electronic gaming machines, 780 hotel room bays and five villas.

“Despite the ongoing COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic, we are confident that the Philippine tourism and gaming industry will be on the road to recovery when Emerald Bay opens,” Mr. Uy said in a previous statement.

PH Resorts engaged Unicapital, Inc. and Abacus Capital & Investment Corp. as lead underwriters for the follow-on offering. It has set the tentative listing date of the shares on Nov. 5.