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ALI earnings rise 21% as property sales recover

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Ayala Land, Inc. reported a 21% profit growth in 2017, driven by robust revenues from its residential and leasing businesses. -- CATHY ROSE A. GARCIA

By Arra B. Francia, Reporter

AYALA LAND, Inc. (ALI) reported its attributable profit rose 21% in 2017, driven by the resurgence of property sales and sustained leasing business.

The listed property developer said in a statement on Wednesday that net income attributable to the parent stood at P25.3 billion in 2017, following a 14% uptick in revenues to P142.3 billion.

ALI attributed the higher revenues to the recovery in property sales for the year, inching up 13% to P122 billion, against a modest growth of 3% in 2016.

“We are pleased with our 2017 business results. All major product lines posted strong growth, with property sales coming in at the higher end of our estimates and leasing income increasing in line with our planned asset build up,” ALI President and Chief Executive Officer Bernard Vincent O. Dy said in a statement.

ALI Chief Finance Officer and Treasurer Augusto Cesar D. Bengzon said in a presentation that international sales, or sales to overseas Filipinos and non-Filipinos, accounted for more than a third of total sales, or P41.6 billion. This is 32% higher than the market’s contribution in 2016.

Of this percentage, 49.4% were Chinese, followed by Americans at 15.2%. Other nationalities such as Singaporeans, Taiwanese, Hong Kong, Japanese, and South Koreans accounted for the remaining portion.

“We see what happened with the warming of relations with China. There are a lot more Chinese tourists, we’re also seeing it now in the property sector,” Mr. Dy said in a press briefing in Makati City on Wednesday.

The leasing business contributed P31 billion to the company’s top-line, 10% up year on year from the completion of more malls, offices, hotels, and resorts.

In terms of project launches, ALI brought into the market P88.8 billion worth of residential and office developments.

For 2017, the company’s actual spending reached P91.4 billion, 48% of which poured into residential developments, 29% for commercial leasing projects, and 23% for land acquisition and estates.

For the mall segment, revenues came in at P17.7 billion, 10% higher year on year. Last year, ALI added five malls to its portfolio, with a combined gross leasable area (GLA) of 189,000 square meters (sq.m.). The malls are Ayala Malls The 30th, Ayala Malls Vertis North, Ayala Malls Cloverleaf, Ayala Malls Marikina, and Ayala Malls Feliz. 

This brought the company’s GLA from shopping centers to 1.8 million sq.m.

Under office leasing spaces, ALI posted revenues of P6.7 billion, higher by 12% from 2016 figures. The company opened six office buildings last year with a GLA of 185,000 sq.m., for a total of 1.02 million sq.m. under the segment.

Meanwhile, the hospitality business added six new facilities, including Seda Vertis North, pushing the number of rooms under the company’s portfolio to 2,583 rooms. With this, revenues from the hospitality segment grew 12% to P6.6 billion for the year.

The company ended the year with a total of 25 estates, with the opening of Evo City in Kawit, Cavite; Azuela Cove in Lanang, Davao; and Seagrove in Mactan, Cebu. This brought ALI’s total land area for estates at 275 hectares.

“Further, we continue to expand our estates and land bank around the country — putting us in a good position to continue to benefit from the strong performance of our economy,” Mr. Dy said.

Shares in ALI gained P1.40 or 3.2% to close at P45.10 apiece at the stock exchange on Wednesday.