IRC eyes 3 property dev’t deals in RizalBy Doris C. Dumlao
Philippine Daily Inquirer
Real estate firm IRC Properties is working on three separate property deals that seek to unlock better values out of its land inventory of more than 2,000 hectares in Binangonan, Rizal.
The first prospective deal involves a prime property inside the Eastridge Golf Club, next to the clubhouse and a block adjacent to Thunderbird Resort and Casino. This covers 1.3 hectares of land but IRC has the option to buy adjacent lots that will bring the area size to five hectares. The company has received proposals from two groups—the Thunderbird operator itself and a Japanese group—which are keen on a joint venture arrangement, IRC chair and chief executive officer Esteban Peña Sy said in an interview with Inquirer at the sidelines of IRC’s stockholders meeting last Friday.
The second deal involves what Peña Sy describes as a “very prime” local real estate developer, to whom IRC plans to sell an initial parcel of about 50 hectares of land in Rizal by the end of this month.
Asked whether this “privileged and prestigious” developer is Ayala Land Inc., Peña Sy did not confirm nor deny.
The plan is to sell to this local developer no more than 100 hectares but a bigger piece of land would be developed in the future under a joint venture. At the minimum, Peña Sy said this group, whose identity would be announced later this month, was interested in getting control of a few hundreds of hectares of property in this area.
The third deal in the works involves close to 20 hectares of land which IRC plans to sell to a consortium backed by a prestigious property developer in China. “The reason for selling to this foreign group is that we want to add color to the community,” Peña Sy said, adding that this group had a lot of good ideas for the project.
From the Chinese-backed group, IRC may generate about P100 million from the sale while the first tranche of the sale to the local group may be worth around P300 million.
Peña Sy said IRC had agreed to give these groups a “good” price —or a big discount—because the entry of these groups was expected to unlock more values for the company, especially with a bigger parcel of the property in Rizal to be developed through joint venture.
IRC “legally owns” more than 2,000 hectares of property in Rizal but the Supreme Court ordered it to give consideration to claimants who had paid the tax declaration. So far, IRC has been able to clear legal obstacles on more than 400 hectares by compensating the claimants.