Lucio Co set to list P30-B REIT; SM’s pushed back to 2024 | Inquirer Business

Lucio Co set to list P30-B REIT; SM’s pushed back to 2024

/ 02:02 AM July 17, 2023

Retail and banking tycoon Lucio Co is planning to list a P30-billion real estate investment trust (REIT) this year as billionaires Enrique Razon Jr. and the Sy family, which was planning to launch the country’s largest-ever initial public offering (IPO), defer plans amid volatile conditions.

Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) president Ramon Monzon said Co, the owner of investment holding company Cosco Capital and supermarket operator Puregold Price Club, was planning to take an industrial-themed REIT firm public in the second semester of the year.

“They’re supposed to be filing an application this month. They are finalizing the list of underwriters,” Monzon told reporters on the sidelines of a business roadshow organized by the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday.


He said the estimated size of Co’s REIT was from P15 billion to P30 billion.


Property giant SM Prime Holdings, on the other hand, was planning the country’s biggest IPO during the second half of 2023 via the listing of its mall assets to raise about P55 billion.

However, “they [SM REIT] will postpone to next year [but] they will file in the fourth quarter [of 2023],” Monzon said.

Razon’s Prime Infrastructure Capital Inc., which was planning to raise P33 billion, and tycoon Edgar Saavedra’s Citicore Renewable Energy Corp. are among the larger IPOs that have been deferred.

These types of IPOs require bigger participation from foreign institutional investors, which tend to shy away from riskier investments when market conditions are challenging.

A seemingly frustrated Monzon, nevertheless, encouraged companies with attractive growth narratives and in need of capital to brave the equity market.

“Some companies defer their listing plans because market conditions are not good,” he said. “My opinion on that matter is the IPO price is not the be all end all of an IPO.”


Monzon added that among regional bourses in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, it was only the Philippines and Vietnam that remained positive as of July compared to the previous year.

He also brushed aside concerns about declining domestic trading volume and delistings, saying this was not unusual in other markets.

“It looks bad but you [have to] look at it in the context of the region,” he said, noting: “Vietnam is down 31 percent in trading volume.”

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Despite challenges, Monzon said they expected to meet their target to grow capital market fundraising by 44 percent to P160 billion. This includes IPOs and follow-on share sales such as the upcoming P25-billion offer of ACEN Corp. INQ

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