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Belle profits hit P555.45M

Posted on April 02, 2013 10:50:09 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]
By Franz J. G. de la Fuente, Reporter
PROPERTY FIRM Belle Corp. more than doubled its full-year net income last year after a one-time gain from its former subsidiary and higher earnings of its associates offset a double-digit drop in revenues, a bourse filing showed.
An affiliate of listed SM Investments Corp., Belle registered a net income of P555.45 million last year, or 177.09% higher from P200.46 million in 2011.
The company was able to post a higher net income last year even as revenues (comprised of sales of real estate and club shares as well as lease income) sank by 39.49% to P421.49 million from P696.52 million.
Cost of real estate and club shares shrunk by 50.36% to P117.15 million versus P235.98 million.
Belle managed to post a higher net income due to a gain received from a liquidated dividend from its former subsidiary, Belle Bay City Corp. (BBCC).
BBCC, a 35%-owned affiliate of Belle was formed in 1995 to develop a 19-hectare reclaimed property along Roxas Boulevard into Belle Bay Plaza, a mixed-use project.
However, Belle Bay Plaza was not completed due to the Asian financial crisis in 1997.
BBCC was dissolved by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Bureau of Internal Revenue in 2005.
“In Nov. 2012, the company (Belle) received its assigned land valued at P1.07 billion, with 42,166 square meters in area as liquidating dividend.

The receipt of the land from BBCC as liquidating dividend resulted in the cancelation of Belle’s investments in BBBC and recognition of gain on liquidating dividend of P539.7 million,” the company’s information statement read.
In addition, a surge in contributions from Belle’s associates also propped up its net income last year.
“The company’s equitized net earnings from associated companies increased by P148.2 million (106%) to P288.7 million in 2012, from P140.5 million in 2011,” Belle said.
Woodland Development Corp., a 47%-owned associate, posted equitized earnings of P135 million last year from P2.9 million due to gains from the sale of land to condominium developer SM Development Corp.
Equitized earnings were also reported by other Belle associates, namely 36%-owned Highlands Prime, Inc., a listed developer, and 35%-owned Pacific Online Corp., a lottery equipment leasing firm, but details were not provided.
Belle, incorporated in 1973 as Belle Resources, entered the property sector with the development of the Tagaytay Highlands International Golf Club in 1989, its Web site showed.
Since 1989, Belle has launched a total of 19 real estate projects, two golf clubs, and one country club, with a total gross land area of approximately 600 hectares in Tagaytay City and Batangas.
Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. had issued Belle one of the four integrated casino permits in the planned Bagong Nayong Pilipino Entertainment City gaming complex in ParaƱaque, together with three other casino-resort developers, namely Travellers International Hotel Group, Inc. (Resorts World Bayshore), Bloomberry Resorts Corp. (Solaire Resort and Casino Manila), and Tiger Resorts Leisure and Entertainment, Inc. (Manila Bay Resorts).
At present, Belle is currently devoting “significant resources” for the mid-2014 completion of Belle Grande Manila Bay, a planned integrated resort and casino project which will rise on a 6.2-hectare site within the state-run Entertainment City near Manila Bay.
Upon completion, Belle Grande will feature gaming facilities, restaurants, entertainment attractions, upscale boutique hotel facilities, as well as a branded family entertainment center, live performance central lounge, and the dome-shaped Fortune Egg which will house a night club.
Shares of Belle lost nine centavos or 1.59% to P5.58 apiece yesterday from P5.67 last Monday.
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