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Expansion planned on Eton site

Posted on August 26, 2013 10:26:30 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]

By Cliff Harvey C. Venzon, Reporter
ETON PROPERTIES Philippines, Inc. plans to expand its business process outsourcing (BPO) hub in Quezon City as part of efforts to boost recurring income, a senior company official said on Friday last seek.
“We have hired Benoy for the master planning, which will be finished anytime soon,” Chief Operating Officer Danilo A. Antonio said in a telephone interview, referring to the global architectural service firm.

“Once we have the master plan, we will start the construction of a new BPO building,” he added.

The BPO building will have “around 25 floors” with approximately 2,000 square meters for each level “fit for the requirements of BPO companies,” Mr. Antonio said, adding: “We are already in talks with BPO locators.”

Asked on the cost of the planned new building, Mr. Antonio replied: “more than a billion pesos.”

The company has three existing BPO buildings at Eton Centris, according to the first-half financial report of LT Group, Inc., the parent of Eton Properties.

Mr. Antonio could not immediately estimate the cost to expand the entire Eton Centris. In May, the official said that aside from BPO facilities, the company also plans to build more commercial structures in the same area.

According to him, the existing BPO hub and commercial space take up just “a third” of the 12-hectare land on which Eton Centris stands.

The company, in a statement last month, reiterated its current business strategy. “The company plans to focus on the development of more commercial centers, retail hubs, BPO offices and hotels -- projects that cater to a significantly growing retail, leisure and outsourcing market,” it said. “Currently under market and design study are commercial projects, hotels and BPO offices in major key growth centers in Metro Manila.”

LT Group’s property development business through Eton Properties posted a net income of P204.4 million in the first half, a turnaround from a P33-million loss recorded in the same six months last year.

According to LT Group, the turnaround “was primarily due to the higher percentages of completion of its projects” and higher revenues from residential projects namely: condominiums Eton Tower Makati in Makati City and 8 Adriatico in Manila; horizontal projects 68 Roces, West Wing Residences and West Wing Villas as well as mid-rise buildings in The Manors -- all at North Belton Communities in Quezon City.

LT Group grew profit by 34.51% to P9.51 billion in the first semester from P7.07 billion in the same six months last year, as revenues in the same comparative periods increased by 5.39% to P31.85 billion from P30.22 billion, while cost of sales dropped by 10.76% to P13.11 billion from P14.69 billion.

Shares of LT Group lost 94 centavos or 4.95% to close P18.06 apiece on Friday last week from P19.00 each last Thursday. Philippine financial markets were closed yesterday in observance of National Heroes Day.

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