Gokongweis get slice of Shakey’s pizza chain

Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) - May 13, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Gokongwei Group is grabbing a bite of Shakey’s Pizza Asia Ventures Inc., marking its foray into the full service restaurant business.

JE Holdings, a private investment company of the Gokongweis, is set to join the Po family’s private holding company Century Pacific Group and the sovereign wealth fund of Singapore in Shakey’s, with a P1.25 billion infusion.

The Gokongweis’ entry is set to further strengthen Shakey’s post COVID-19 expansion plans.

JE Holdings’ P1.25 billion infusion, in exchange for newly issued shares, will result in a nine percent stake in Shakey’s.

“This equates to a purchase price of P8.20 per share – a 10 percent premium over the company’s latest stock price and 14.6 percent higher than the latest 45- day volume weighted average.

Shakey’s president and CEO Vicente Gregorio said the company looks forward to the entry of the Gokongwei family.

“We believe that we are in a relatively good position financially and, with the added benefit of a new strategic investor, we plan to make the most of both the fresh round of capital and the various synergies that come along with partnering with the Gokongwei group of companies,” he said.

JE Holdings chairman and president Lance Gokongwei will join the company’s nine-seat board of directors during Shakey’s stockholders meeting in July.

“I’ve always been a fan of the Shakey’s brand and look forward to working with both the board and management to further the company’s growth and restart expansion plans in anticipation of the inevitable reopening of our economy. I strongly believe in the long-term prospects of the food service industry, against a backdrop of rising Filipino incomes, and I have confidence that Shakey’s will continue to be a leader in this space,” Gokongwei said.

Christopher Po, chairman of Shakey’s, said the new capital would give the company additional flexibility at a time when several organic and inorganic opportunities have started to open up.

“As we are now firmly on the path of recovery, our sights are set on growth and expansion, and I thank the Gokongwei family for their trust and confidence in our long-term plans. We are eager to welcome them into our wow-ing business and culture,” Po said.

Shakey’s posted a net income of P29 million in the first three months, down 74 percent from a year ago.  Gross revenue reached P1.28 billion, 33 percent lower than the P1.8 billion recorded a year ago.

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