MEGAWORLD CORP. is investing $5 million (about P250 million) in its own start-up brand that will build the country’s first homegrown lifestyle delivery mobile application.

In a statement on Wednesday, the Andrew L. Tan-led property company said it is forming a digital innovations subsidiary, AGILE Digital Ventures, Inc., which will invest in startups geared towards food, retail and hospitality industries.

The $5-million investment will go to a three-year start-up project called PICK.A.ROO, a mobile app that will gather more than 300 local and international merchants to sell food, gadgets, hardware, personal care and other items on the platform.

The app is scheduled to launch within the month.

“Our main goal is to help retailers smoothly migrate to the digital platform especially during this challenging time,” said Kevin L. Tan, chief strategy officer of Megaworld, who is also president of AGILE Digital Ventures.

“Since 2018, we have been looking for investment opportunities on an app that will enable our retail partners sell and deliver their products online and on-demand. We have talked to several potential partners, but eventually, we decided to build our own,” he added.

The company is currently scouting other investment opportunities related to boosting its technology platforms.

Megaworld operates 20 lifestyle malls across the country which were hit by the coronavirus-related lockdown. It also has over 700 residential developments, over 60 office towers and 11 hotels in its portfolio.

The company’s attributable net income fell 9% to P3.5 billion in the first quarter of 2020. Its shares at the stock exchange ended flat at P2.99 each on Wednesday. — Denise A. Valdez