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Cebu steel bar maker forms property unit

Posted on November 26, 2012 10:45:15 PM [ Businessworld Online ]

CEBU CITY -- Steel bar manufacturer Worldwide Steel Group, Inc. has formed a property development unit to take advantage of a booming real estate market fueled by demand from business process outsourcing (BPO) here.

Worldwide Central Properties, Inc., with an initial capitalization of P100 million, is also seen to complement the group’s businesses, said Alan Kent Ong, company president. The group has been manufacturing and distributing steel bars and other construction materials for 36 years.

“Our mission is to build communities. We’re taking it a step further by not just providing construction materials but also building homes for our customers,” Mr. Ong said in a briefing last week.

The firm’s first project will be a two-tower residential condominium dubbed as Sundance Residences in Banawa, Guadalupe, the most populous barangay in Cebu City.

Mr. Ong said he believed the real estate boom in Cebu “will still continue for a few more years because of the growing BPO industry, the housing backlog and increasing OFW (overseas Filipino workers) remittances.”

Sharon Anne G. Ong, vice-president for marketing and sales, said their first project will rise on a 3,200-square-meter family-owned property in Banawa.

The first tower, estimated to cost P450 million, will have 208 units in 12 storeys and a retail component. Construction will start middle of next year and is targeted to be completed in 2015.

Ms. Ong said the units, which will be priced starting at P1.8 million for a studio, will be designed for the middle to upper middle class segments.

“We are looking at the second generation of families living in the Banawa and Capitol area,” she said.

Amenities will include a pool, kiddie pool, day care center, and a sky garden with fitness center and family entertainment center on the 14th floor.

The project’s design team includes architect Antonio Trillanes, Jr. for the condominium and furniture designer Kenneth Cobonpue for amenities.

The company also plans to develop a two-hectare property in Lapu-Lapu City on Mactan Island into a residential subdivision. “This is still in the planning stage. But we’re looking at (launching this) late next year,” Mr. Ong said.

Worldwide Steel started in 1976 as Cebu Worldwide Hardware & Electrical Supply. It later formed Worldwide Home Depot, Cebu Diamond Industrial & Manufacturing Corp. and Worldwide Polytech Industries, Inc. -- Marites S. Villamor           

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