Singaporean fund GIC completes shares subscription in Ayala energy firm

Published March 19, 2021, 7:00 AM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Singaporean wealth fund GIC Private Ltd, through its affiliate Arran Investment Pte. Ltd., has completed its subscription of 4.0 billion primary shares in Ayala-led AC Energy Corporation (ACEN), which then built up the latter’s cash hoard by additional P11.88 billion.

“The private placement enables ACEN to raise additional capital totaling P11.88 billion to fund its various developmental and operating projects, as well as potential acquisitions,” the Ayala firm has noted in a statement to the media.

The Singaporean wealth fund is cornering 17.5-percent stake in ACEN through a two-step investment process; which will then enable GIC to inject aggregate P20 billion capital in the Ayala energy company.

The first one touched on the 4.0 billion shares subscription in ACEN which has just been completed; and the second step delves with the purchase of secondary shares in parent firm AC Energy and Infrastructure Corporation (ACEIC), which is classified as a “top up” transaction.

ACEN said “the top-up will enable GIC to achieve the target 17.5-percent ownership stake in ACEN, taking into consideration GIC’s expected future dilution, including from the planned infusion of ACEIC’s international assets into ACEN.”

Following the completion of the Singaporean firm’s private placement, GIC Senior Vice President for Infrastructure Nicole Goh Phaik Kim, has been elected director of ACEN – in a board meeting that followed after the closing of the transaction.

Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, chairman and CEO Ayala Corporation, noted that the tie-up they have with GIC in the energy platform of the Ayala group is a continuation of the business relationship that they first cemented in the banking sector.

“We have been partners in the Bank of the Philippine Islands and we are delighted to build on this relationship in another fast growing and dynamic sector,” Zobel stressed.

His brother Fernando Zobel de Ayala, who is chairman of AC Energy and Ayala Corp president and CEO, similarly stated that “GIC provides not only growth capital but also the experience and network that will help us scale up our renewables investments.”

He added that both GIC and the Ayala firm are “committed to sustainable investments,” while emphasizing that “we are excited to be partners in ACEN as the company transitions to a low carbon-portfolio.”

The Ayala energy firm is targeting renewable energy (RE) capacity installations reaching 5,000 megawatts until year 2025 — to be spread via investments in the Philippines and its offshore markets in the Asian region. (MMV)