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Ayala Land firms up foray into cheap housing via new unit

Posted on August 31, 2011 10:52:48 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]

PROPERTY DEVELOPER Ayala Land, Inc. has moved to formalize its foray into socialized housing, yesterday announcing the creation of a new subsidiary that will undertake its first project in Cavite.

Ayala Land said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission dated Aug. 26 that its board has approved the creation of a fifth residential brand that will offer house and lot packages for P400,00 and below.

“The projects under this new brand will be pursued via South Maya Ventures Corp., a separate organization from the company’s other existing subsidiaries Alveo Land Corp., Avida Land Corp., and Amaia Land Corp.,” the filing read.

These other subsidiaries operate residential brands ranging from luxury units to mass housing.

This, after Ayala Land expressed last month its desire to fill a 3-million-unit housing backlog in the country via socialized housing, a segment it had described as “hugely underrated.”

The developer had said the brand for this division would be named Buena Vida.

Ayala Land went on to disclose that its new subsidary will launch “its first project in General Trias, Cavite, within the last quarter of the year on a 10-hectare lot currently owned by the company.”

Officials had earlier said the project would comprise of units measuring 20 to 25 square-meters (sq.m) on a 50- to 60-sq.m lot.

In a related development, Ayala Land disclosed in the same document that its board has decided to declare a cash dividend worth seven centavos per share for the second semester ending Dec. 31.

The dividend will be payable on Oct. 5 for shares on record as of Sept. 20.

Ayala Land’s first-half net profit rose 35% from year-ago levels due to double-digit growth in real estate sales and office and commercial rents, the developer said in earlier reports.

Earnings from real estate and hotel operations, which accounted for the bulk of group revenue, increased 15% to P19.99 billion.

The company started construction on 6,625 residential units in the period. The firm, however, has hesitated on plans to put up a real estate investment trust.

Its share prices closed 0.89% higher at P15.94 apiece yesterday.

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