Metrobank raises capital stock to fuel expansion | Inquirer Business

Metrobank raises capital stock to fuel expansion

Bank hopes to put up more branches with P100-B fund

Metrobank has secured the approval of its shareholders to double its authorized capital stock to P100 billion to fuel the bank’s expansion plans.

Shareholders approved the hike in authorized capital during a stockholders’ meeting on Monday, bank officials said.

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Metrobank’s expansion calls for the establishment of at least 30 new branches this year for both the mother company and its subsidiary thrift bank, PS Bank, said Jette Gamboa, first vice president for strategic planning.

The cost of putting up one branch ranges from P25 million to P30 million, she said.

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“The idea is to open new branches in high-growth areas, which are mostly in the countryside,” Gamboa said in a press conference.

Currently, Metrobank and PS Bank have 828 branches all over the country.

With the increase in branches, Metrobank aims to increase its loan portfolio by at least 15 percent this year.

In 2012, the bank’s loan portfolio rose by 15 percent year-on-year to P525.7 billion. Income from loans boosted the bank’s net income to P15.4 billion—up 40 percent from that of the previous year.

“Our loan-growth target is generally based on the outlook for the economy,” Gamboa said.

Historically, she explained, the growth rate of the bank’s loan portfolio was more than double the economy’s growth rate.

She said that for 2013, Metrobank expects the Philippine economy to expand by 6 percent.

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Gamboa said the increase in authorized capital would ensure that the bank remains compliant to the capitalization requirement of the BSP.

The regulator is set to tighten capitalization requirements starting Jan. 14 in observance of the Basel 3.

Basel 3 is an updated set of internationally prescribed bank regulations that will require banks to maintain capital of high quality to make them resilient to shocks.

Gamboa said that, with the increase in authorized capital, the bank would soon consider the financial instruments it would issue as a means to raise funds.

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