corporate

Del Monte Pacific shuts facilities in 4 US locations

August 23, 2019

DEL MONTE Pacific Limited (DMPL) is shutting several factories in the United States as part of a restructuring program that seeks to bring down costs.      In a statement posted on its website, the canned fruit manufacturer said it is closing facilities in four locations owned by US subsidiary Del Monte Foods, Inc.      The facilities include those in Sleepy Eye in Minnesota and Mendota in Illinois, which will stop production at the end of the current peak season. The company will also divest from its facilities in Cambria, Wisconsin and from its manufacturing assets in Crystal City, Texas.      DMPL will transfer production in these locations to other facilities within the US. The company looks to fully utilize the capacity of its existing plants after the divestment.      “This decision has been difficult and has come after careful consideration. This restructuring is a necessary step for us to remain competitive in a rapidly changing marketplace,” DMPL Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Joselito D. Campos, Jr said in a statement.      “Our asset-light strategy will lead to more efficient and lower cost operations,” he added.      The facilities are part of Del Monte Foods’ 10 plants in the US, which sells products under brands Fruit Naturals, Orchard Select, SunFresh, and Fruit Refreshers. The company also has two plants in Mexico.      In the Philippines, DMPL operates a 26,000-hectare pineapple plantation in Mindanao, dubbed as the largest fully integrated pineapple operation in the world. It also has a beverage bottling plant and frozen fruit processing facility in the country.      DMPL earlier postponed the P17.5-billion initial public offering of local unit Del Monte Philippines, Inc., due to market volatility. The company sought to raise money to prepay or repay the group’s existing debt.      In its fiscal year ending April 2019, DMPL reported a net profit attributable to the parent of $20.32 million, versus an attributable loss of $36.49 million the year before. Revenues, however, slipped 11% to $1.95 billion.      DMPL is listed on both the main board of the Singapore Stock Exchange and the Philippine Stock Exchange.

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Cebu Pacific pins growth hopes on cargo business

August 20, 2019

CEBU PACIFIC operator Cebu Air, Inc. is looking to ramp up the expansion of its cargo business, banking on the continued growth of the logistics industry.      “The business plan is for the cargo side to grow faster than the overall passenger side. If we succeed in that, then of course, by definition, we will grow (cargo) to a bigger portion of the total (revenue) pie,” Alex B. Reyes, vice-president of Cebu Pacific’s cargo division, told reporters in the launch of its first all-cargo freighter Wednesday.      “We’re just responding to the demand in the market place. If we can supply it, then we’ll grow along with the demand in the market place,” he added.      The Gokongwei-led budget carrier draws its profits from three business segments: passenger, cargo and ancillary services. In the first half, revenues from the passenger segment grew 18% to P33.35 billion, from ancillary services by 23.8% to P8.52 billion, and from cargo by 7% to P2.84 billion.      Mr. Reyes said Cebu Pacific is optimistic on its cargo business, noting that the 7% revenue increase in the past six months shows its growth potential in the region.      He said despite the 5.4% decline in Asia-Pacific demand for air freight as of June — based on data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) — Cebu Pacific was able to maintain its growth momentum during the period.      The company’s cargo business is still largely supported by the belly capacity of its Airbus fleet, but it is now exploring more opportunities, starting with all-cargo planes.      Cebu Pacific took delivery of its first all-cargo aircraft, a reconfigured passenger ATR 72-500, which it will start deploying next month. The next one is expected to arrive before yearend.      “The ATRs are supposed to supplement the total capacity that we have. But they’re still relatively small compared to the total network capacity,” Mr. Reyes said.      “The freighter is brand new to us in terms of operations. We don’t have experience yet operating an all-cargo aircraft. But this is the first step in that direction,” he added.      The ATRs will initially operate domestically, but the company aims to fly them within the region someday.      Cebu Pacific Vice-President for Commercial Planning Alexander G. Lao said the arrival of more Airbus planes and the operational launch of the ATRs in the remainder of the year prepares the company well for cargo expansion.      “The main portion of our cargo revenue business continues to be driven from the Airbus fleet, because that’s really a higher capacity aircraft in terms of both weight (and) volume, and the associated revenue with it,” he said.      “We believe that by the second half, we’ll actually grow much faster in terms of total seats and total flights than we did in the first half,” he added.      The new ATR freighter will fly out of Manila when it starts operations in September, but will be moved to the Sangley air base once it opens in November.      Cebu Air booked a net income of P7.14 billion in the first half of the year, up 116% due to an increased passenger volume and higher average fares.

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Cebu Landmasters books P256-million profit in Q2

August 20, 2019

CEBU Landmasters, Inc. (CLI) booked a 6% decline in attributable profit for the second quarter of 2019, as most of the projects completed for the period were part of joint ventures.      In a regulatory filing, the Cebu-based property developer reported a net income attributable to the parent of P255.8 million in the April to June period. This came on the back of a 20% increase in revenues to P1.63 billion.      “That’s a result of the percentage of completion. Most that have been completed in the first half is mostly for joint ventures, that’s why it’s slower,” CLI Chief Finance Officer Beuregard Grant L. Cheng said in a media and analysts’ briefing in Taguig yesterday.      For the first half, net income attributable to the parent climbed 13% to P854.34 million following a 34% uptick in revenues to P3.495 billion.      The listed company said it remains on track to hit an attributable profit of P2 billion for full year 2019, as unrecognized revenues totaled P12.9 billion by end-June.      “Internally, we’re pretty much on track and we’re pretty confident of hitting our guidance numbers,” Mr. Cheng said.      The company attributed its growth in the first half to high-end projects such as 38 Park Avenue in Cebu City, as well as the on-time construction of its projects that allows it to quickly turn over the units.      Reservation sales for the period stood at P5.26 billion, driven by the sales of its newly launched residential project called One Paragon Place in Davao City which is now 78% sold out.      CLI also benefited from its growing leasable portfolio, as it generated a 16% increase in revenues to P27.7 million. The company ended the first half with 11,815.15 square meters (sq.m.) in gross leasable area, with another 69,234 sq.m. under construction. It targets to have 200,000 sq.m under its network by 2023.

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Auto sales sustain uptrend in July

August 16, 2019

MOTOR vehicle sales continued inching up with 205,945 units sold as of July or a modest 3.16 percent increase against 199,628 units sold in the same period last year boosting confidence that the domestic motor vehicle industry would be able to exceed last year’s sales by the end of this year.      A joint report by the Chamber of Automotive Manufacturers of the Philippines, Inc. (CAMPI) and the Truck Manufacturers Association (TMA) showed encouraging growth indicators.      Notably, the report showed Suzuki Philippines, Inc. now placing fourth largest from fifth place last month in terms of sales with 13,119 units or 18.3 percent growth from 11,086 units last year. Suzuki now accounts for 6.37 percent market share among 25 members of CAMPI and TMA.      Among the positive indicators was the July sales which posted a double-digit growth of 13.5 percent with 31,810 units from 28,038 units recorded in the same period a year ago. On a month-on-month basis, sales performance is slower by measly 0.4 percent against 31,950 units recorded in the previous month.      CAMPI President Rommel R. Gutierrez expressed optimism the industry would finally exceed last year’s sales, which floundered following the imposition of higher taxes under the TRAIN Law.      “We are optimistic that if we are able to sustain this growth trend, we will be able to exceed our sales performance of last year,” said Gutierrez.      He noted of positive factors such as continued and strong sales campaigns and stable supply of units have outweighed the unfavorable effects of the off-peak season to the overall sales growth. Historically, July is also considered as one of the lean months of the industry.      Of the overall seven-month sales, commercial vehicle sales grew 5.5 percent to 144,130 units from 136,669 units while the passenger car segment was still in the negative 1.8 percent to 61,815 units from 62,959 units last year.      Industry leader Toyota Motor Philippines still continued with a runaway market share of 42.28 percent to 87,574 units from 84,401 units in the same period last year.      Mitsubishi Motors Philippines followed with 19.4 percent market share with 35,977 units sold from 38,827 units last. Nissan Philippines, Inc. cemented its hold on the third spot with 53.6 percent growth in sales to 24,711 units from 16,091 units.      Completing the top five is Ford Motor Company Philippines, Inc. with 13,095 units, but a 10.8 percent decline from the same period last year of 14,685 units last year.

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Primavera Residences: Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (edge) Certified Building

August 12, 2019

Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) is an innovation of the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a sister organization of World Bank. EDGE certification is an online platform, a green building standard and a certification system active to over 150 countries worldwide.      In its push to create high-quality, sustainable buildings in emerging cities in the Philippines, Italpinas Development Corporation (IDC) has built the mid-raise twin-tower Primavera Residences in uptown Cagayan de Oro, northern Mindanao. In 2015 Primavera Residences has been certified by EDGE.      Primavera Residences is a mixed-use development, completed in 2014, serves as IDC’s flagship project in the Philippines. The characteristic design of the building which has been awarded as Best Mixed-use Development in the Philippines by Asia Pacific-Property Awards, is the results of the integration of renewable energy features – passive for saving and active for generating power – with architecture.      This integration begins during the conceptualization process and is then developed into the design, construction, and building maintenance. The process is created using performance-based design strategies that make use of parametric and generative architectural software which analyze the existing data of natural weather conditions of the site location, optimizing the use of natural elements to shape the design of the building—the same “thinking model” used by nature.      The building, in fact, can be considered not just as a sheer construction but as a living organism and this is made possible through the application of the best principles of passive house technology: shadow control, wind cooling, indirect light exposition maximization and shape performance.       The south facades are designed in a way to use the building components, floors, slabs, cantilevers and balconies as shading devices for windows or terraces which are dimensioned appropriately to minimize the overheating and glare effect with a reduction of up to 80% than conventional residences.       The internal vertical atrium, found in the towers, is an efficient natural ventilation system that integrates the vertical and horizontal distribution of air throughout the buildings, contributing to the passive cooling of units by using a natural chimney effect.       The building is also harnessing solar energy from 72 photovoltaic panels installed on the building roof top, covering approximately 120 sqm. and producing around 1200 kWh per month. These renewable energy sources together with the use of a smart greed, allows to effectively manage the buildings’ power supply, thus reducing electricity consumption.       Thanks to the implementation of the above mentioned green passive strategies in the design and construction of Primavera Residences, the Predicted Savings evaluated by EDGE application have been estimated around 33% of energy savings, around 37% of water savings and around 32% Less Embodied Energy in Materials.      IDC has recently communicated with EDGE to continue to develop its future green projects with the support of the EDGE application considering highly effective the results achieved through the use of a software that helps the designers and developers not only to identify the most cost-effective ways to build green but finding also solutions to reach the minimum standard of 20% less resource intensity in energy, water and embodied energy in materials.      Through EDGE certification, Primavera Residences has been recognized as a landmark in sustainable development showing how it is possible to develop in the Philippines elegant and efficient green buildings, accessible to the growing middle-class which is fueling economic growth with strong consumer demand.

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Cebu Pacific launches Clark-Narita, Bacolod, Iloilo flights

August 12, 2019

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga  -- Cebu Pacific, led by its president Lance Gokongwei, launched on Friday its three newest destinations from Clark International Airport (CRK) - Bacolod, Iloilo, and Narita, Japan.      In his speech during the launching event held at the Marriot Hotel here,  Gokongwei said Cebu Pacific is the first Philippine carrier to mount direct flights between Clark and Tokyo, via Narita.      He noted that with the expansion of its route network in the Clark hub, Cebu Pacific will become the largest carrier in Clark in terms of capacity by end-2019, capturing 28 percent of the total number of seats offered by all carriers operating here.      Flights from Clark to Bacolod and Iloilo run daily,  while direct service to and from Narita is scheduled four times weekly --Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.      Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, for his part, said the three inaugural flights “is a game changer in so far as Clark is concerned”.      “Cebu Pacific, like other airlines, give the riding public the freedom of choice ,” Tugade said, adding that the Duterte administration is committed to provide mobility and connectivity.      “This exercise precisely adheres and gives meaning to that commitment of having mobility and connectivity because now in Clark, you connect Clark to Iloilo, Bacolod and Narita, Japan. Happening all for the first time and happening all with the complement of Cebu Pacific,” he added.       Cebu Pacific earlier announced that it would begin flying daily between Clark and Puerto Princesa City in Palawan by the fourth quarter of 2019.      Gokongwei said four new routes will boost Cebu Pacific’s total capacity in Clark by 40 percent in 2019 alone, following a 75-percent increase in 2018 with the launch of direct commercial air service to and from Davao and Panglao, Bohol, as well as additional frequency for the Clark-Macau route.      “We have been operating flights in and out of Clark since 2006. The opening of these new routes is a testament of how committed we are to continuously develop this hub. We are not only establishing seamless inter-island connections, but also opening up North Luzon to more potential entrepreneurs, both local and foreign, furthering tourism, trade, and investment opportunities in Clark and its surrounding areas,” he said.      Cebu Pacific flies to four other domestic destinations --Cebu, Caticlan, Tagbilaran, Davao; and three other international destinations, Singapore, Macau and Hong Kong, to and from Clark.      “As we aim to fly 200 million passengers by 2020 and 300 million by 2022, trust that we have been and will always keep our customers at the heart of the business. Rest assured, we will continue to cater to the growing travel demand by enabling more Juans to travel conveniently and affordably through our year-round low fares,” Gokongwei added.      The airline expects to receive over 60 aircrafts in the next eight years, guaranteeing even greater growth in and out of the Philippines.       Aside from Clark, Cebu Pacific operates flights out of six other strategically placed hubs in the Philippines, namely Manila, Kalibo, Iloilo, Cebu, Cagayan de Oro and Davao.      Cebu Pacific  operates over 2,000 weekly flights across 37 domestic and 26 international destinations. (PNA)

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