Ongpin’s Alphaland lines up residential, tourism projects

05/28/2010 | By: Daxim Lucas, Philippine Daily Inquirer
AN INFUSION OF EQUITY BY NEW and existing investors is expected to raise the asset base of publicly listed Alphaland Corp. this year as it prepares for a more aggressive push into the real estate market.

According to company chair Roberto V. Ongpin, the property firm which he controls would see its net asset value (NAV) rise to P16 billion this year as new projects—usually in tandem with joint venture partners—come online.

If achieved, this would represent a 28-percent rise in the firm’s NAV, which measures the total assets net of its liabilities.

At present, Alphaland’s NAV stood at P13.9 billion (end-2010), he said.

Speaking to reporters after the firm’s annual stockholders’ meeting in Makati City, Ongpin said the increased NAV would be due mainly to the real estate assets that joint-venture partners fold into the firm.

Ongpin, who served as trade minister under the Marcos administration, expressed optimism about the local property market, which he said remained undervalued relative to markets in neighboring Asean countries.

“In Vietnam, for example, the prices are almost as high as Hong Kong’s,” he said. “Here we’re doing only a tenth of that.”

Alphaland recently completed the construction of its Southgate Tower and mall—a 30-year-old unfinished structure which it rehabilitated into a modern facility—at the corner of Edsa and Pasong Tamo in Makati City.

This year, Ongpin said the firm would forge ahead with plans to build a three-tower development at the far end of Ayala Avenue dubbed the Makati Place.

The facility will allocate two towers for residential units, while the third tower will be used as a hotel. It will rise on the 10,000-square-meter property of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines, which will become the firm’s joint-venture partner.

“This project will have a 30-month timeline, so we expect it to be finished before the end of 2011,” Alphaland president Mario Oreta told reporters.

Alphaland has also broken ground on its Balesin Island Resort on an island in Lamon Bay in the eastern side of Luzon.

Oreta said the company planned to build at least seven resorts on the island, which is half the size of Boracay Island. It is accessible through a 30-minute airplane ride from Manila on board aircraft that the Ongpin group will acquire for members of the private facility.

The company will also launch the Alphaland Boracay Gateway on a 500-hectare property adjacent to Caticlan Airport in Aklan, Panay Island. The white-sand resort is expected to benefit from its proximity to the airport, which is being redeveloped by San Miguel Corp.

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