“Ladies and Gentlemen, our members of the Board of Directors, our valued stockholders, and guests, welcome to the 2019 Annual stockholders’ meeting of Abacore Capital Holdings Inc. (PSE: ABA).
As we promised last year, we have delivered another banner year for Abacore Capital Holdings Inc.
The company declared a 20 centavo per share dividend equivalent to almost PhP700 million last March and April 2019, which have been fully paid to date. We believe in giving our stockholders maximum shareholder value.
Let me take this time to remind our stockholders of the nature of our company. Abacore is a holding company, and by its nature, we earn our recurring revenue from dividends received from subsidiaries, and other companies we have interests in via joint venture. As such, management is constantly in the field finding the best companies and industries to invest our funds for better shareholder value. We also leverage our funds by investing in our land bank around Batangas for future joint ventures and land sales.
The following is a partial list of companies Abacore currently has invested in:
- Pacific Online Systems, the operator of lotto in the philippines
- Abacus Coal Development Corporation; a wholly owned subsidiary with over 7,000 hectares of coal mine claims in Surigao
- Abacus Gold; which holds thousand of hectares in gold mine claims
- Abacus Global Technovisions, Inc.; which owns the Alpa Hotel in Batangas City
- Montemaria Asia Pilgrims, Inc; which holds our landmark real estate project, the Montemaria Tower of Peace, the tallest statue of the Virgin Mary in the world. MAPI will promote wholesome religious tourism in Batangas. Abacore owns about 209 hectares more or less surrounding the statue open for commercial and tourist development with interested partners.
- Philippine Regional Investment Development Corporation; which Abacore owns a portion of the shares, is an investment house with different assets all over the Province of Batangas
- Montemayor Aggregates and Mining Corporation which recently entered into a joint venture with Carino Management and Development Corporation for a club membership and vertical development at the Montemaria complex in Batangas
This is just some of the many projects Abacore has interests in and we expect to derive recurring revenue from.
Abacore also has interests in landed companies which were the source of our recent dividends. Total Mall Philippines, Inc, Vantage Realty Corporation, and KapuluanPropeties, Inc. Held a big amount of our land holdings in Mataasna Bayan, Lemery, Batangas which we sold to Steel Asia Manufacturing Corporation.
We mention the Steel Asia transaction because it raised zonal valuations around Lemery, Batangas and the whole Batangas Province in general which is good for Abacore since many of Abacore’s affiliates own properties around the Steel Asia development and around the Province of Batangas. Our land bank in Batangas is composed of over 200 hectares of prime land located in residential, commercial, tourist, and industrial zones. Our acquisition cost of these properties pale in comparison to their current market values as the trend of moving businesses outside of Metro Manila continues.
Just as an example, an average of our acquisition costs are at 400 pesos per square meter to 1000 pesos per square meter, while the selling price in the market is anywhere from 2,500 pesos per square meter for raw land, 6,000 pesos per square meter for commercial, and up to 20,000 pesos per square meter for properties which are beach/bay front. These prices have room for growth for any of our future buyers and partners, especially if you compare to the heavily saturated prices in Metro Manila.
We see the country’s build buildbuild program, as implemented and led by the local provincial government headed by its current Governor, Dodo Mandanas, to benefit the asset values of Abacore, due to the heavy construction of infrastructure such as roads, railways, the international seaport and other infrastructure that support businesses from different industries; the constant development of infrastructure increase the value of our properties and, in turn, will allow us to invest in more companies and create more cash flow from both one time sales and recurring revenue from joint ventures.
As some of you might have read, we are currently negotiating with investors to develop an energy center in the last available industrial zone located in Batangas City, Batangas to be a source of revenue for Abacore in the future. We expect this deal to take off sometime in 2020. We will update you with the proper disclosures as we progress.
We are very optimistic for the future of Abacore. Year to date our share value has grown by over 500% and we are confident that we can maintain our growth and shareholder value in the coming years as different industries related to logistics, energy, and other economic industrial zones move and relocate to Batangas.
We expect land values to increase exponentially over the next year as it has over the last two years and expect Abacore assets to grow considering our land bank.
It is with this we thank you, the stockholders for your continued confidence in the Board and management, and we promise to work hard for you to make our next year even better than the last.