Friday, 5 March 2010

Aboitiz group’s earnings double to P8.3B

Neil Jerome C. Morales and J. B. F. Santos

THE LISTED holding firm of the Aboitiz energy and transportation conglomerate more than doubled profits last year despite a slow economy.

“On a full-year basis, Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc. ended the period with a consolidated net income of P8.3 billion, recording an increase of 102% year on year,” the firm said in a statement.

In the same statement, Aboitiz Equity Ventures President and Chief Executive Erramon I. Aboitiz said: “2009 was a record year for Aboitiz Equity. It is very gratifying to see that all our businesses performed well last year in spite of the uncertain environment prevailing at the start of the year.”

The group’s power business still accounted for the bulk of the earnings at 56%, followed by the banking group at 23%, the food group at 16%, and the transport group at 5%.

Last year, Aboitiz Equity Ventures had a nonrecurring gain of P961 million, from P775 million in nonrecurring losses in 2008. It also recorded a P380-million foreign exchange gain at the parent and subsidiary levels.

“Accounting for all one-off items, Aboitiz Equity’s core earnings was still strong at P7.3 billion, up 50% year on year,” the company said.

For the power group that contributed P4.3 billion to Aboitiz Equity Ventures, net income grew by over a third to P5.7 billion due to higher revenues from power generation.

Discounting one-off items, Aboitiz Power’s generation business earned P4.3 billion for the year, P1.1 billion more than in 2008.

The company’s Tiwi-Makban geothermal power plants, which were turned over to Aboitiz Power in May 2009, and the Pagbilao coal-fired power plant, the dispatch control of which was given to the company in October 2009, contributed energy sales of 2,653 gigawatt-hours, accounting for 57% of the total sales.

The financial services segment, which contributed net earnings of P1.8 billion, grew by 106% from P880 million in 2008.

The segment includes commercial bank Union Bank of the Philippines and thrift bank City Savings Bank.

Aboitiz Equity Ventures said its transport business recorded a “375% year-on-year increase in income contribution, from P81 million in 2008 to P387 million in 2009.”

The holding company’s Pilmico Foods Corp. recorded a 168% year-on-year rise in income contributions to P1.2 billion given higher volumes in the flour business.

Shares in Aboitiz Equity Ventures were unchanged yesterday at P11.25 apiece.

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