Metro Retail eyes loans to partly fund expansion

By: Vanessa Claire Lucero November 06,2015 - 01:31 AM

Initial public offering ‘oversubscribed,’ says BPI Capital exec

The expansion of Gaisano-owned Metro Retail Stores Group, Inc. will be supported by available credit lines, a top-ranking executive said.

“We’re still very much under-leveraged,” said Frank Gaisano, Metro chief executive officer, at the sidelines of the investor briefing yesterday on the company’s initial public offering (IPO).

Metro Retail is expected to raise about P4 billion from its IPO involving a total of 1.012 billion common shares at P3.99 apiece. The shares are being offered at a discount of about 34 percent due to market volatility. The offer period is from Nov. 9 to 13 while listing has been set for Nov. 24.

Gaisano said the lower proceeds from the IPO, P4 billion instead of P6 billion, will not affect the company’s expansion plans. Metro Retail plans to open 7 more stores by the first quarter of 2017.

Reginald Cariaso, chief operating officer of lead underwriter BPI Capital Corp., said the discounted share price has generated positive response from investors.

“The feedback of around P4 per share was well-received and well oversubscribed now,” he told reporters.

New department stores and supermarkets will be built at an Ayala development in Negros Occidental, a Megaworld complex in Iloilo and another Megaworld development in Pasig. Metro will also open a  hypermarket in Calbayog City in Samar.

The company also plans to build a logistics and distribution hub in Cebu.

Metro Retail’s IPO, which was approved earlier by the Securities and Exchange Commission, involves 920 common shares and up to 92 million shares for oversubscription.

Metro is touted as the number one retail group in Cebu across its three retail formats – department store under the brand Metro, supermarket also under the brand Metro Supermarket; and hypermarket under the brand name Super Metro.

In terms of the number of transactions and store sales per store, Metro Retail ranks as number one in the Visayas for their hypermarket and department store formats. It ranks second for supermarkets in Visayas.

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TAGS: BPI Capital, BPI Capital Corp., Inc., initial public offering, Metro Retail Stores Group

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