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Megaworld unveils plan to build 20 new malls in five years; two slated for yearend launch

Posted on August 18, 2015 10:50:00 PM [ BusinessWorld Online ]

MEGAWORLD Corp. is opening two new malls within its township in Taguig City before the end of the year, kicking off its planned rollout of 20 new malls in the next five years.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, Megaworld First Vice-President Kevin L. Tan said the property conglomerate is spending P4 billion to develop its full-scale flagship mall and a dining mall with a combined gross floor area (GFA) of around 110,000 square meters (sq.m.) in Uptown Bonifacio.

“We do have plans to open 20 more and this is the first of that,” the son of billionaire Andrew L. Tan said.

By 2020, Megaworld’s lifestyle malls will have a total GFA of 1.4 million sq.m. with their contribution to rental income seen increasing to as much as 50% from the current 40%, Mr. Tan said.

“This is the time to expand it aggressively because the economy is doing very well and consumption level is quite high now,” he said.

“We’re riding along that trend by building more of this.”

With the opening of the two malls in Uptown Bonifacio, the total GFA of the real estate firm’s lifestyle malls will increase to 414,000 sq.m.

“We’ve been quite aggressive here with the launching of residential projects because demand for the units is quite high. Same goes with the takeup of our BPO office buildings. The reason why we have decided to put our flagship mall in this township was partly due to demand. We’re ahead of schedule in many ways,” Mr. Tan said.

In 2012, Megaworld announced it would invest P65 billion to build Uptown Bonifacio within a period of 10-20 years. It will be home to luxury residential condominiums, office towers, open parks and leisure amenities.

Uptown Place is a five-level upscale mall covering 85,000 sq.m of retail and commercial spaces for international luxury brands -- including foreign labels that are coming to the country for the first time -- dining options as well as leisure and entertainment amenities.

Anchor tenants include Rustan’s Supermarket, Robinsons Appliances, Toys ‘R Us, True Value, National Bookstore and Hamley’s, among others.

Beside Uptown Place is a dining mall called Uptown Parade, a 25,000 sq.m. strip featuring a mix of specialty restaurants serving international cuisines.

Its anchor tenant is The Palace Superclub, the biggest night club in Asia with over 8,000 sq.m. of party space that can accommodate around 10,000 people.

“This is very different... from residential. We wanted to become a complete developer. When I started, I said we’ll try and transform Megaworld [from] a residential developer to more of a lifestyle developer, with a 360-degree approach to community living so lifestyle malls had to be created to fulfill the vision to create these townships,” Mr. Tan said.

Megaworld shares lost 21 centavos or 4.68% to P4.28 apiece.

Its profit slumped to P3.08 billion in the April to June period, shrinking from P13.75 billion in the same three months last year, the company’s consolidated statements of income showed.

Bottomline in the six months ending in June, was P5.43 billion, from last year’s P16.44 billion. -- Krista Angela M. Montealegre    
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