Leviste to acquire 71% stake in Roxas Holdings for P5 billion from MVP

Kristine Daguno-Bersamina - Philstar.com
Leviste to acquire 71% stake in Roxas Holdings for P5 billion from MVP
Manuel V. Pangilinan (right) is the new chairman, president and CEO of SPNEC, with founder Leandro Leviste as vice chairman.
The STAR / File photo

MANILA, Philippines — Solar energy trailblazer Leandro Leviste, through Countryside Investment Holdings Corp. (CIHC), is set to acquire a controlling 71.6% stake in Roxas Holdings Inc. (RHI) from Hong Kong’s First Pacific Co. Ltd. 

The move aims to save the debt-ridden sugar and ethanol producer from bankruptcy.

In December 2023, Leviste and business magnate Manny V. Pangilinan became partners in SP New Energy Corp. (SPNEC) after Meralco unit MGen Renewable Energy Inc. acquired control of SPNEC in a P15.9 billion deal.

The agreement with First Pacific CEO Pangilinan comes as RHI struggles with P4.4 billion in debt.

RHI’s financial woes include significant debts to banks such as Bank of the Philippine Islands, BDO Unibank, and Land Bank of the Philippines, plus P1.4 billion in trade payables. 

The company also reported a net loss of P1.1 billion for the fiscal year ending September 2023, due to declining sugar sales.

RHI operated the 97-year-old Central Azucarera Don Pedro Inc. (CADPI) sugar mill in Nasugbu, Batangas, which closed on Feb. 28, 2024, with all employees terminated by March 29, 2024.

The closure has reportedly led to the loss of livelihood for over 13,000 farmers and sugar mill workers.

RHI's primary assets include 236 hectares of land in Nasugbu, complete ownership of CADPI, and a 98% stake in San Carlos Bioenergy Inc.

In March 2024, Leviste’s CIHC announced a plan to invest P5 billion to help boost development of rural Batangas.

The P5-billion investment will focus on sectors promising significant benefits for the local economy, including energy, industrial and commercial projects.

CHIC also committed to investments that will promote sustainable development and shared prosperity for Batangas communities. — with reports by Richmond Mercurio


Editor's note: Philstar Global Corp., which operates Philstar.com, is majority-owned by Hastings Holdings Inc., a subsidiary controlled by business tycoon Manuel V. Pangilinan. This article was independently produced following editorial guidelines.

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