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PSE targets P200B from fund raising

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By Arra B. Francia
Reporter

THE PHILIPPINE Stock Exchange, Inc. (PSE) is projecting P200 billion from listed companies’ fund raising in 2019, despite falling short of the same target this year.

PSE President and Chief Executive Officer Ramon S. Monzon said listed companies have raised a total of P187.84 billion so far from the equities market in 2018.

“So we’re still P12 billion short. Can we repeat that feat next year? I hope so… We’re gonna try to hit P200 billion again next year,” Mr. Monzon told reporters in a briefing at the bourse’s site in Bonifacio Global City on Tuesday night.

At the same time, Mr. Monzon noted that the country’s big banks have already conducted their fund-raising activities this year, citing Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co. (Metrobank), the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) and Union Bank of the Philippines, Inc. (UnionBank).

These four banks conducted stock rights offerings in 2018, contributing majority of the capital raised at the PSE. Metrobank raised P60 billion, while BPI made P50 billion. RCBC and UnionBank generated P15 billion and P10 billion, respectively.

“… [E]verybody’s going to bank bonds. You go to bank bonds because the reserve requirement… is very small so you have more funds to lend out,” Mr. Monzon explained.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) last August relaxed rules that would allow banks to raise capital via corporate bonds without securing central bank approval. Banks would need to comply only with existing rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as submit a certification of compliance and other supporting documents to the BSP.

Other companies that conducted stock rights offerings this year include PetroEnergy Resources Corp. which raised P758.3 million; Robinsons Land Corp., P20 billion; Integrated Micro-electronics, Inc., P5 billion and the PSE itself which raised P2.9 billion.

Property and construction firm D.M. Wenceslao & Associates, Inc. was the only company that conducted an initial public offering (IPO) despite the market volatility this year, raising about P8.15 billion for its expansion plans.

“Two were about to do it but backed out at the last minute,” Mr. Monzon said.

“Next year I think will depend on the market. If the market really is in the high 7,000 or 8,000, baka maraming maengganyo mag-IPO (there may be many companies that will be encouraged to conduct IPOs).”

Canned fruit manufacturer Del Monte Philippines, Inc. and tech manufacturer Cal-Comp Technology (Philippines), Inc. were the two firms that announced their intention to enter the exchange this year, but postponed their plans due to the weakness of the market.

There are also three companies that could enter the bourse through the backdoor, including businessman Dennis A. Uy’s PH Resorts Group Holdings, Inc. through Philippine H2O Ventures, Corp. as well as his holding firm Udenna Corp. through ISM Communications Corp. Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment, Inc. also plans to enter the PSE by taking over shell firm Asiabest Group International, Inc.

This year also saw Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. and DoubleDragon Properties Corp. conducting follow-on offerings, raising P517.5 million and P4.5 billion, respectively.

IRC Properties, Inc.; China Banking Corp.; Basic Energy Corp. and Golden Bria Holdings, Inc. also raised funds via private placements this year.

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