Stock Commentary

Quick Takes: I-Remit launches mobile remittances app and 2 more market updates

Merkado Barkada
Quick Takes: I-Remit launches mobile remittances app and 2 more market updates

I-Remit [I 0.7 unch] [link] launches its mobile remittances app, called “ICASH”. The promotional material says that ICASH will allow users to pay bills, do bank transfers, load e-wallets, and do ICASH-to-ICASH fund transfers.

MB Quick Take: I’m not the target market for this sort of thing, but if I were a shareholder, I’d be concerned about the discoverability of this app. The name “ICASH” (I-Remit can’t seem to figure out if it wants to stylize it as “ICASH” or “iCash”) has terrible Google discoverability because it’s such a common name. There are lots of fairly large organizations already using this name.

There’s a payday loans company in Canada, a bank management software company, a state payment mechanism for Illinois, and the “Internal Committee Against Sexual Harassment”, just to name a few from the first page. There’s even an app in the App Store called iCash that appears to be some Arabic-language payments app. Again, nothing against the ICASH/iCash app’s functionality, but the branding on this product is likely to cause some confusion with people who are trying to install it. That can be troublesome and impede take-up. 

Discovery World Corp [DWC 1.4 unch] [link] pushed P30 million down to its wholly-owned subsidiary, Cay Islands Corporation (CIC), by subscribing to 30 million shares at P1/share. CIC owns property in El Nido (“Shoppes at Vanilla Beach”), and will use the money for working capital to operate this business and for “other planned hotel and hostel developments”.

MB Quick Take: This is not a lot of money, and it’s kind of a small-stakes transaction, but I think it shows how corporations move money around to their subsidiaries. The parent company and the subsidiaries don’t just share one big slush fund bank account; to inject money (equity) from the parent company, the parent company needs to buy shares from the subsidiary.

Public companies (usually) do a good job of keeping track of these transactions, but the movement of funds is often a big sticking point when a large private company is trying to take on an investor or is considering going public through an IPO. It’s tempting for owners to just treat all of the companies as extensions of their own bank accounts, and it can be difficult for administrators in the company to “keep up.”

Megaworld [MEG 2.2 1.8%] [link] plans P20 billion “integrated lifestyle community” in the Sta. Cruz District in Manila City. The project is called the Winford Resort, and will combine a residential tower with commercial buildings and a casino complex. The design will be inspired by the pre-war architecture of “Old Manila”. MEG expects to complete the project in 2028, and generate around P3 billion in sales from it.

MB Quick Take: Business plans aside, I’m interested to see a developer actually lean into the pre-war look and feel of Old Manila. There are so many tourists that come to Manila to sight-see the city, but the city (and developers) have done very little to play-up that desire by encouraging and rewarding that interest. I’m not saying that MEG casino resort is the answer, because that’s also kind of crass and obviously not what every traveler is asking for, but it’s at least a step in a different direction.




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