By Richmond S. Mercurio (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 18, 2014 - 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines - Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc., the country’s largest homebuilder expects profits to reach a new high again this year as housing demand in the Philippines continues to be robust.
The listed property holding firm of real estate tycoon Manuel B. Villar Jr. sees income to hit a record P5.67 billion for the entire year, Vista Land officials told The STAR.
Vista Land investor relations officer Brian Edang said the company is eyeing a 12 percent year-on-year growth in profit this year after its net income rose 15 percent to a record P5.06 billion in 2013.
Villar, in a separate interview, said the firm is on track to meet its double-digit profit growth target for the year.
The company is also set to hike its capital expenditure next year to launch more projects.
“We still don’t have the final figure yet for our capex but let us just say that it would be significantly be bigger than this year’s capex,” Edang said.
The property company has earmarked a budget of P21.6 billion this year, up 22 percent from P17.2 billion in 2013. As of the first six months of 2014, the company has already spent P10.4 billion in capital expenditures so far or about 48 percent of its budget.
Vista Land’s net income climbed 12 percent to P2.8 billion in the first half from P2.5 billion a year ago.
Villar said the residential housing business continues to be strong despite a lot of developments from various companies across the country. He said many Filipinos still do not have their own homes at present.
“The end user will not become saturated because our backlog is 3.6 million housing units. We’re a poor country, so the more people improve their economic status and as the middle class grows, the demand grows (for houses),” Villar said.
“Our case is not like that of the developed countries where most of their people have their own homes. Here, there are still plenty who do not have. If you look at developed countries now, you will see that we are still far behind. While some look at it as we have gone far from where we are before, I would like to look at it as we are still far from where we want to go,” he added.
Vista Land already has residential housing developments in 34 provinces and 74 cities and municipalities around the country. The property firm has completed more than 250,000 housing units over the past 38 years.
Last year, the company launched 35 projects with an estimated value of P26.1 billion, 31 of which are in the low and affordable segment.