Del Monte may pursue share sale this year

Del Monte Philippines Inc. may push through with its planned initial public offering this year.

Informed sources said Del Monte Philippines was set to decide in the next two weeks if it would push through or not with the planned maiden share sale this year.

With the Philippine Stock Exchange Index back around the 7,800-point level, sources said the company might consider the IPO once it saw a strong momentum for the index to go up to the 8,000-point mark.

Del Monte Philippines deferred its P13.5-billion maiden share offering in June due to the market volatility. 

The PSEi temporarily entered the bear market condition in June when it closed at 7,098.15, down 22 percent from a peak of 9,058.62 on January 29.

The market since then has climbed back to the 7,800 level on improving sentiments.

Another factor that could affect Del Monte Philippines’ decision was the large initial public offering of San Miguel Food and Beverage Inc.

Since both IPOs are in the food business, sources said Del Monte Philippines might want to avoid a potential clash with SMFB’s P142.8-billion IPO.

Del Monte Philippines, according to a filing earlier approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission, plans to sell 587.437 million in secondary shares.

The company plans to use the net proceeds from the offering to partially prepay and repay certain financial obligations.

The company has tapped BDO Capital and Investments Corp., BPI Capital Corp. and China Bank Capital Corp. as joint domestic lead underwriters, and DBS Bank Ltd. and Nomura as joint international lead underwriters.

Del Monte Philippines plans to sell up to 70 percent of the shares to domestic investors and 30 percent to foreign institutional and retail buyers.

Del Monte Philippines is engaged in the production and sale of food and beverage products in the Philippines under the Del Monte brand, such as fruit juices and juice drinks, packaged pineapple and mixed fruit, various tomato and spaghetti sauces and culinary mixes, and exports them under other brands.

It produces pineapple in its 25,000-hectare plantation in Bukidnon province and operates a processing facility with an annual capacity of 700,000 tons.

Topics: Del Monte Philippines Inc. , Philippine Stock Exchange Index , San Miguel Food and Beverage Inc.
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