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Vista Land defers foray into BPO

Monday, April 20, 2009 [ manilatimes.net ]

By Chino S. Leyco, Reporter

VISTA Land and Lifescapes Inc. said its planned foray into the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector would take a back-seat for now. Manuel Paolo Villar, Vista Land chief finance officer, said the company has deferred its plan to venture into the contact center business amid the volatile global economic environment.

In August last year, the company said that it was planning to build contact center offices this year in the Visayas and southern parts of Luzon, including Rizal province.

Ricardo Tan Jr., Vista Land chief information officer, said the company is adopting a more cautious stance this year amid the uncertain market environment.

Vista Land correspondingly cut its capital expenditure outlay this year by seven percent to P7.743 billion from the P8.331 billion last year.

“We launched 32 new projects in 2008 valued at about P25 billion. We will continue to launch more projects this year, but we are being quite conservative given the generally guarded market sentiment,” Tan said.

“Twenty eight projects are in the pipeline for this year which are expected to generate about P23 billion in revenues,” he said.

Although Vista Land is anticipating some weakness in sales compared with last year, it remains upbeat about the company’s prospects, Tan said.

“We are in a solid position to weather the ongoing crisis. We raised substantial funds prior to the global economic turmoil and have since maintained a strong balance sheet,” he said.

Benjamarie Therese Serrano, Vista Land president and chief executive, said that last year cancellations stood at 3 percent to 3.5 percent, and in the fourth-quarter alone inched up to 5 percent in horizontal and 10 percent in vertical projects.

“We anticipate that it will continue until 2009,” he said.

With 60 percent of its sales from overseas Filipinos, Vista Land said its revenues remained strong last year growing by 27 percent to P10.4 billion from P8.2 billion in the previous year.

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