Puregold share sale

Puregold share sale nets $155 million for controlling family

Strong demand boosts the deal size, and the transaction helps restore the free-float of the Philippine supermarket chain.
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Stephen CuUnjieng of Evercore Partners (left) with the Co family: Susan, Lucio and Ferdinand Vincent, at the FinanceAsia awards eaerlier this year, where Puregold won best mid-cap equity deal
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<div style="text-align: left;"> Stephen CuUnjieng of Evercore Partners (left) with the Co family: Susan, Lucio and Ferdinand Vincent, at the FinanceAsia awards eaerlier this year, where Puregold won best mid-cap equity deal </div>

Controlling shareholders in Puregold Price Club have raised Ps6.5 billion ($155 million) through a share sale in the Philippines supermarket chain. The book opened after trading hours on Wednesday and closed later that night, a source said yesterday.

The selling shareholders were Lucio Co, the company’s chairman, and Susan Co, the vice-chairman. The strong demand encouraged them to increase the deal size to 250 million shares, up from the 220 million they had originally planned, the source said. The increased offering size accounted for about 9% of the company’s outstanding shares, based on data on the Philippine stock exchange’s website.

The Co family fixed the price at Ps26 per share, which was the bottom of the marketed range of Ps26 to Ps27. The range represented a discount of about 5% to 8.5% versus Wednesday’s close of Ps28.4. The increased deal size added an extra $14 million to the proceeds.

After the transaction, Puregold’s stock ended yesterday’s trading down 4.9% at Ps27, holding well above the final price. Since its listing debut in October last year, Puregold’s stock has almost tripled, from around Ps11 to Ps27.

The Cos recently received shares as part of the acquisition earlier this year of Kareila Management Corporation, which owns the S&R Membership chain. The share sale helped to restore Puregold’s free-float to the pre-deal level of 32%, the company said in a statement. The family remains the major shareholder of the company.

The deal attracted a strong order book that was anchored by some long-only and regional investors, the source said, adding there were more than 60 accounts in the book and, even after the deal was upsized, it was still a couple of times covered. Demand was driven by Asia-based accounts, but there was good interest from global long funds, European and US investors, and Philippine institutions, the person said.

Puregold is the second-biggest grocery retailer in the Philippines.

UBS was the sole bookrunner for the deal.

Also this week, Ayala Land, a Philippine property developer, raised Ps13.6 billion ($323 million) from a top-up placement, which it plans to use for acquiring properties and assets. At $323 million, it became the Philippines’ biggest overnight follow-on transaction, excluding rights offers, according to Dealogic.

¬ Haymarket Media Limited. All rights reserved.

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