Metro Pacific

Metro Pacific’s flight of the phoenix

Once synonymous with dud real estate investments, Metro Pacific has risen from the ashes as a pure infrastructure play in the Philippines. Cherie Marriott talks to CFO David Nicol.
David Nicol, Metro Pacific
David Nicol, Metro Pacific

You can’t fault Manny Pangilinan for his drive and determination. The chief executive of Hong Kong-listed First Pacific has had plenty of ups and downs since he founded the company 30 years ago, and is variably described as a savvy dealmaker by his fans and a burly risk-taker by his detractors. The last time the chips were down was some nine years ago when heavy debt and a region-wide recession threatened to topple the empire of disparate businesses that Pangilinan and his boss, Indonesian tycoon Anthony Salim, had amassed after the 1997 financial crisis.

First Pacific’s stock was being punished for the high price that it had paid for some...

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