Saturday, 17 April 2010

Benpres quadruples 2009 profit to P11.9 billion

By JAMES A. LOYOLA
Manila Bulletin
http://mb.com.ph/articles/253015/benpres-quadruples-2009-profit-p119-billion

Benpres Holdings Corporation reported a net income attributable to parent quadrupled to P11.9 billion in 2009, compared to P2.9 billion in 2008 on the back of huge one-time gains.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, the firm said the increase is due to the recorded P7.5 billion net gain from buying back an aggregate of $287 million in debt from certain creditors of Benpres in 2009.

The buyback led to the reversal of accrued interest and financing charges, and lower debt levels resulted in lower finance costs (-15 percent) year-on-year and higher interest income (+93 percent).

Benpres also recorded P4.2 billion as equity in net earnings of associates, primarily due to the sale by associate First Philippine Holdings Corporation (FPHC) of a 20 percent stake in the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) in July 2009.

“The invigorated position of Benpres augurs well for the growth strategies of our major investees. FPHC is focused on the development of clean and renewable energy through its subsidiaries, and ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corporation will pursue global expansion,” Benpres president Angel S. Ong.
Benpres received a total of P823 million dividends in 2009 from investees ABS-CBN, FPHC and Rockwell Land Corporation (Rockwell Land).

In August 2009, Benpres sold its stake in Rockwell Land and shares of Digitel, which were part of its portfolio in 2008.

While in 2008, it received a total of P945 million dividends from investees ABS-CBN, First Philippine Infrastructure Development Corporation (FPIDC)/First Philippine Infrastructure, Inc. (FPII), and Rockwell Land.

Benpres posted consolidated revenues of P24.85 billion in 2009, 11 percent more than 2008 consolidated revenues of P22.31 billion.

Gain on sale of investments decreased by 15 percent to P277 million on the sale in 2009 of company’s stakes in Rockwell Land and Digitel. This compares with a gain on sale of P3.34 billion from the sale in 2008 of its interests in First Philippine Infrastructure Development Corporation and Professional Services, Inc. (The Medical City).

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