Puregold sets aggressive expansion plan for 2011
- Zinnia B. Dela Peña () - December 27, 2010 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Puregold Price Club Inc., one of the country’s fastest-growing hypermarket and supermarket chains owned by Filipino-Chinese businessman Lucio Co, is embarking on an aggressive expansion program next year to build 35 new stores.

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Puregold said it is slated to open 15 branches within the first half of 2011. The company has grown significantly since it commenced operations from one store in 1998 to 51 stores in 30 cities as of Sept. 30, 2010 throughout Metro Manila and Luzon.

The existing branch network consists of 38 hypermarkets with an aggregate net selling space of 179,060 square meters, 12 supermarkets under Puregold Junior brand, and one mini-mart called Puregold Extra.

Leveraging on the success of its retail and wholesale model, Puregold intends to establish presence in the largely underserved Visayas and Mindanao markets beginning 2012. Store openings are planned in Iloilo, Negros Occidental, Leyte and Cebu as well as in Cagayan de Oro, Davao City and General Santos City.

In selecting sites for opening its stores, Puregold aims to be the first store in markets that it believes have a high customer potential.

As part of its expansion plan, the company has entered into a total of 20 leasing agreements for its new stores to be opened in 2011 in various parts of the Philippines. These new stores are expected to provide 73,058 square meters of additional net selling space.

Funding for its expansion will come from a planned initial public offering (IPO) estimated to raise up to P11.2 billion.

The company plans to offer as much as 700 million common shares (including a greenshoe option) through a primary and secondary offering at a maximum price of P16 apiece.

The offer, which will account for 36 percent of the firm’s outstanding stock after the IPO, consists of up to 500 million primary shares and 100 million existing shares to be issued by the selling shareholders. The company is allotting 100 secondary shares for the overallotment option in case of strong demand.

The company said it has an option to sell 100 million more shares depending on market demand.

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. Ltd. is the international lead manager while BDO Capital & Investment Corp is the domestic lead manager for the share issue.

The shares will be priced by March 2 while the offering for small investors and the domestic market will run from March 8 to 15. Listing of the shares is targeted by March 21.

DAVAO CITY AND GENERAL SANTOS CITY HONGKONG AND SHANGHAI BANKING CORP INVESTMENT CORP LEYTE AND CEBU LUCIO CO METRO MANILA AND LUZON NEGROS OCCIDENTAL PUREGOLD PUREGOLD EXTRA PUREGOLD JUNIOR PUREGOLD PRICE CLUB INC
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