BIZ BUZZ: Bid-to-win approach pays off for SMC

BIZ BUZZ: Bid-to-win approach pays off for SMC

/ 02:08 AM February 26, 2024

With no formal protests that could spoil its victory, the San Miguel Corp. (SMC) consortium is making preparations before finally taking control and revitalizing the aging Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia).

How did SMC president Ramon S. Ang receive the news when the outcome was announced?

Apparently, he didn’t hear of it immediately since he was busy with a meeting, Biz Buzz sources said. When finally informed by his senior staff, he gave a modest “thank you” before flashing a sphinx-like smile.


We don’t know for sure if Ang expected to triumph given their aggressive bid that dwarfed all other competitors. We do know some of their rivals anticipated this very scenario given the conglomerate’s bid-to-win track record in the past.


“It’s like the Naia Expressway all over again,” a businessman told Biz Buzz.

He was referring to the Naia Expressway public private partnership auction over a decade ago, when SMC’s P11-billion offer eclipsed the second-best bid of P305 million by Metro Pacific Investments of Manuel V. Pangilinan.

The same thing happened a year later during the drama-filled auction for the Cavite Laguna Expressway PPP.

SMC submitted a bid of P20.1 billion, nearly double the proposal of the second-highest bidder, a venture between Ayala and Aboitiz. However, the conglomerate was disqualified due to a typographical error in its bid documents. After intense lobbying, the late President Benigno Aquino III made the controversial decision to re-auction the project, but this time Metro Pacific prevailed with an even larger offer of over P27 billion.

Certainly, the other contenders for Naia didn’t hold back in marshaling their top talent and dedicating considerable effort to their proposals. The SMC consortium just wanted it more.

There are obvious synergies with SMC’s vast consumer and construction portfolio and also its massive Bulacan air gateway, despite concerns of airport competition being stifled in the area.


While there are whispers of a potential challenge from another bidder, SMC has indicated that they are not bothered by these rumors. Filipinos simply want a convenient and world-class gateway that other countries already enjoy.

With the private sector taking the helm, there is hope this long-held desire will soon become a reality. —Miguel R. Camus

DA reshuffling far from over

If you believe the Department of Agriculture (DA) is finally done reshuffling people within the agency, think again.

Just recently, Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr. named veterinarian Enrico Miguel Capulong as officer in charge director of the Bureau of Animal Industry.

Capulong replaced Paul Limson, an alumnus of the University of the Philippines Los Baños, now the director of the DA’s Biotechnology Program Office.

This office helps create the enabling environment for the use of biotechnology to modernize agriculture and fisheries.

Before his appointment, Capulong headed Manila South Harbor’s quarantine office. According to the agency, he holds a degree on veterinary medicine from Araneta University and master of science in agriculture from Pampanga Agricultural College.

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Since assuming the post in November last year, Tiu Laurel has appointed several people and reshuffled key officials within its ranks to realize his vision of a streamlined and more responsive bureaucracy. —Jordeene B. Lagare INQ

TAGS: Biz Buzz, Business

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