BIZ BUZZ: Big brother deal aborted | Inquirer Business

BIZ BUZZ: Big brother deal aborted

/ 05:20 AM December 24, 2021

A buy-in deal that would have been the gateway for local firm Xurpas Inc. to enter the vibrant US tech investing arena and participate in the hunt for unicorns has collapsed.

Xurpas received a written notification from Filipino-born entrepreneur turned venture capitalist Frederick Manlunas of the Wavemaker Group terminating the subscription, stock purchase and other agreements executed on Sept. 20, 2020, citing failure to close the transaction by Dec. 31, 2020.

Under the deal, Wavemaker Partners US, a venture capital management firm based in Los Angeles would have become the big brother of Xurpas. Using its own stocks as currency, Xurpas would have bought this entity while the general partners of Wavemaker were supposed to subscribe to unissued shares of Xurpas equivalent to a 48-percent stake, diluting the shares of Xurpas founders Nix Nolledo, Fernando Jude Garcia and Raymond Racaza.


To date, no Xurpas shares had been issued in favor of Wavemaker group. Moreover, Xurpas did not receive any shares in Wavemaker pursuant to the earlier deal.


“The company’s board also accepted the termination notice furnished by Wavemaker Group and has no objection to the foregoing,” the disclosure said. No reason was cited as to why the deal had fallen through.

In short, the local tech firm that is looking for redemption needs to work harder. Trading on shares of Xurpas had been suspended since Sept. 18, 2020.

At its last closing price, it was valued by the stock market at just P1 billion from a peak of P37.4 billion in 2016.

—Doris Dumlao-Abadilla

‘One BPI’

This 2022 marks the beginning of a leaner organizational structure for Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), whose merger with its wholly owned thrift bank arm, BPI Family Savings Bank, will take effect on Jan. 1.

The merger has been approved by BPI’s shareholders and regulators. This unification—whereby BPI will be the surviving entity—is seen to allow Southeast Asia’s oldest bank to seize and optimize opportunities to enhance the overall experience of its customers. As “One BPI,” customers will have access to the full suite of the group’s products and services via its digital and physical channels.

For investors, this is seen to present an opportunity to enhance revenue and streamline cost, thereby increasing value for shareholders.


“To reiterate, we initiated and pushed for this merger with the best interests of our customers and employees in mind,” said BPI president and CEO Teodoro “TG” Limcaoco. “One BPI is about changing the way we think and act as one of the country’s trusted financial partners. More importantly, One BPI is about changing the way we serve our customers relevant to the times.”

“One BPI is about banking for the future, to enable us to lead the economic turnaround, toward a better and sustainable Philippines,” Limcaoco added.

Postmerger activities will start in the first quarter of 2022, and are expected to be completed by the end of 2022.

BPI has also obtained the green light from the Securities and Exchange Commission to raise its authorized capital to P50.6 billion (from P49.6 billion), divided into 5 billion common shares with a par value of P10 per share.

—Doris Dumlao-Abadilla

Help for ‘Odette’ victims

Help continues to pour in for provinces devastated by the strongest typhoon to hit the country this year.

Water concessionaire Maynilad Water Services Inc. said it extended assistance to Filipinos affected by Typhoon “Odette” (international name: Rai) by providing bottled water and cash aid.

It also deployed mobile water treatment plants and personnel to the typhoon-stricken provinces. Combined, these plants can produce around 20,000 gallons of potable water daily, enough to supply the needs of around 50,000 people.

Maynilad also donated P6.5 million to relief efforts in the provinces through the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation and One Meralco Foundation and turned over 2,800 1-liter bottled water and 100 4-L bottled water to families in Cebu and Bohol.

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More bottled water donations would be shipped out in the coming weeks, said Maynilad, with deliveries being extended to Siargao, Tacloban and Palawan.

— Karl R. Ocampo
TAGS: Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), Biz Buzz, Odette victims, Xurpas Inc.

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