Asia's best companies 2001 - Philippines

FinanceAsia congratulates the winners of the best managed company awards in this year''s Best Companies survey. Here we present the results for the Philippines.

This survey covers the performance of the top companies in 10 countries in Asia. Investors and other executives from financial centers such as Hong Kong, Singapore, New York and London are among those who participated in this survey. We had 497 votes.

Best Managed Company, Best E-commerce Strategy, Best Investor Relations, Most Committed to Shareholder Value - Ayala Corp


Best Managed Company

1Ayala Corp36
2San Miguel Corporation15
3ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp12
4Jollibee Foods Corp8
4SM Prime Holdings8
6Bank of the Philippine Islands7
8Manila Electric Company5
8Megaworld Corp5
10JG Summit3
10Metro Pacific Corp3
14Equitable PCIBank1
14Nestle Philippines1
14Psi Technologies.1

Best E-commerce Strategy

1Ayala Corp20
2Bank of the Philippine Islands16
4ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp6
5Union Bank3
6Manila Electric Company2
8Equitable PCIBank1
8JG Summit1
8Metro Pacific Corp1
8San Miguel Corporation1

Best in Investor Relations

1Ayala Corp21
3San Miguel Corporation10
4ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp7
4Bank of the Philippine Islands7
6Manila Electric Company6
7Jollibee Foods Corp3
8Metro Pacific Corp2
8SM Prime Holdings2
8Megaworld Corp2
12JG Summit1
12Psi Technologies Inc1

Commitment to Shareholder Value

1Ayala Corp21
2ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp10
3Bank of the Philippine Islands7
3San Miguel Corporation7
5SM Prime Holdings6
6Jollibee Foods Corp5
7Manila Electric Company4
7Megaworld Corp4
7Metro Pacific Corp4

Ayala Corporation swept the board in the Philippines, winning the top spot in all four categories. The highly regarded company, which has investments in real estate, food, telecommunications and banking, is the largest conglomerate in the country. It topped voters lists despite a string of quarterly earnings declines precipitated by slowdowns in its property and banking subsidiaries. "Ayala Corp is the epitome of a conscientious, resilient and profitable corporation," raves one voter.

In 2000, the company's profit fell 38%, hurt by the political crisis surrounding former president Joseph Estrada and volatility in interest rates and foreign exchange. Bank of the Philippine Islands, owned by Ayala, saw its profit fall 35% while profit at Ayala Land, the country's biggest property developer, fell 29%. On the positive side, the company's Globe Telecom unit posted a gain of 65% and its Pure Foods unit saw its profit rise 22%.

While times have been difficult and turbulent for all Philippine companies, Ayala has made the best possible effort to conduct business as usual. It has doggedly pursued its e-commerce strategy by entering a joint venture with IIJ Group of Japan, an Internet access company, to set up an Internet data centre. Earlier, Ayala was a founding investor in BayanTrade Dotcom, a Ps2 billion electronic supplies and services procurement venture. Ayala's Internet unit, iAyala, will also develop a smaller data center to lease internet and multimedia equipment and services to businesses.

Meanwhile ,the company's Web site is growing rapidly. The site has more than 100 online stores selling movie tickets, books, clothes and other products. Ultimately, Ayala plans to link its financial telecommunications and real estate services through the Internet.

Ayala survived, and according to some observers even thrived, during the Asian currency crisis. "While willing to go into new ventures, it has the discipline to review initiatives more thoroughly than the competition," says one respondent. "This probably accounts for Ayala's ability to grow even if market demand for its various products may be growing at different rates. Take for example their push into telecommunications and the de-emphasis on the consumer food side, whilst supporting banking and developing e-initiatives."

The company is maintaining a cautious stance towards the capital markets following its withdrawal last August of a special class of "x" shares amid a slumping stock market. Later this year, however, Ayala plans to sell up to Ps1.75 billion of redeemable preferred shares. It will use the money to pay debt coming due this year.

The results of this poll first appeared in the April issue of FinanceAsia magazine. To buy a copy please send an e-mail to: [email protected].

Share our publication on social media
Share our publication on social media