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ALI readies FTI lot payment

Posted on August 19, 2012 10:09:12 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]

AYALA LAND, Inc. (ALI) has already secured funding for the over P19-billion upfront payment it promised the government for the Food Terminal, Inc. (FTI) property in Taguig City, officials said on Friday.

“We have sufficient resources to fund the amount needed to pay for [FTI] this year,” Jaime E. Ysmael, Ayala Land chief finance officer, told BusinessWorld in a text message last Friday.

Last Tuesday, Ayala Land won the bidding for 74 hectares of the state-owned FTI, submitting a P24.331-billion offer as it aims to create a central business district similar to its planned Vertis North hub in Quezon City, earlier reports said.

Ayala Land had pledged an upfront payment of P19.465 billion by the closing of the auction, with the balance to be paid a year after.

The firm tapped the bond market last May, listing P15 billion worth of fixed-rate callable bonds, proceeds of which will be used to fund part of the firm’s 2012 capex.

“The amount due next year is much smaller, and can be easily financed through our regular sources, which can be from operating cash or borrowings,” Mr. Ysmael added.

FTI, one of the largest industrial complexes in Metro Manila, is the first major government asset to be privatized by the Aquino administration’s Privatization Management Office.

The effort had been stalled since the 1990s, with auctions failing to prosper in 2009 and 2010 due to poor global economic conditions.

For 2012, Ayala Land had allotted a record P37 billion in capital expenditures (capex) to fund around 67 new projects with an estimated sales value of P90 billion, as well as for the acquisition of new properties moving forward. The company later upsized its 2012 capex to P47 billion for unbudgeted property acquisitions and for its possible tie-up with the Ortigas family
Ayala Land shares fell by 0.67% to P22.30 apiece last Friday from P22.45 at its previous close. -- Franz Jonathan G. de la Fuente           
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