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Property firm vows to meet public float rule

Posted on 06:22 PM, December 17, 2010 [ BusinessWorld Online ]
POLAR PROPERTIES Holdings Corp. plans to increase public ownership in its shares beyond the mandated 10%, the company told the local bourse on Friday.
Following a board meeting, Polar Properties President Jerry M. Navarrete said: "Althorp Holdings, Inc., which currently holds 11.30% of the company’s capital stock, is in the process of selling down all or substantially all of its shareholdings subject only to market conditions."
Althorp Holdings is a subsidiary of Cambridge Group, Inc. which has four property subsidiaries: Carissa Homes, Casa Regalia, San Marino Homes, and Towns and Villas, Inc.
At end-October, Polar Properties had a 4.89% public float. "To ensure compliance with the rule, the board resolved to review the matter six months after [Friday’s] meeting," Polar Properties said.
On. Nov. 29, the Philippine Stock Exchange gave listed firms a year to comply with the 10% minimum public float rule as a requirement for continued listing. Erring firms will be slapped with penalties.
Listed companies that have a public float of 5% and below will be penalized with an amount twice the annual listing maintenance fees (ALMF) for the first year of noncompliance after the 12-month grace period, 2.25 times the ALMF for two years, and 2.5 times the ALMF for three years.
The ALMF for first board companies is equivalent to 1/100 of 1% of the market capitalization but not be less than P250,000 and not more than P2 million for each firm. The ALMF for those listed on the board for small and medium enterprises is P100 for every P1 million of market capitalization, but not less than P50,000 and not more than P250,000.
For firms that have more than 5% but less than 10% public float, the PSE will slap penalties of 2.5 times the ALMF for the first year of noncompliance after the 12-month grace period, 2.75 times the ALMF for two years, and thrice the ALMF for three years.
Those who do not comply over a three-year period will be delisted from the PSE.
Polar Properties owns and controls Brittany Estates Corp. and Masterpiece Asia Properties, Inc. It is an associate of listed Vista Land & Lifescapes, Inc.
Shares in Polar Properties, which was incorporated in 1969 as Polar Mines and Development Corp. before shifting to property development in 2004, fell by P0.37 to close at P5.00 each on Friday. -- Emilia Narni J. David
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