Philippine Business Bank sets IPO date

Philippine Business Bank (PBB), one of the largest savings banks in the Philippines, is set to launch an IPO in February 2013 amid an expansionist plan to increase its nationwide network to 100 branches by the end of the year.

The issuance is expected to fetch $98.8 million and will establish the young bank as a major competitor in the vibrant local banking sector.

The offering will debut on February 6, while the listing date is set for February 19.

PBB has announced plans that it will invest $2.4 million to improve its IT infrastructure system, such as its current account and savings account/general ledger, treasury and loan-management systems, as well as in upgrading its servers, in the fourth quarter.

PBB plans to establish 22 more branches to increase its reach to the Philippines’ growing SME industry, bringing the bank’s nationwide network to 100 branches. The country’s SME industry is considered the backbone of the economy and a key player in the driver of economic growth, having shown greater demand for small business loans.

SMEs account for a substantial 63 per cent of PBB’s total loan portfolio.

The first phase of expansion will focus on Luzon, especially the Metro Manila area. The bank will invest $1.2 million to open up new branches in Makati, Mandaluyong, Pasay, Pasig and Quezon within the first quarter of 2013.

As of end-September 2012, PBB booked a net income of $15 million, up by around 14 per cent from $13.5 million in the same period in 2011.

PBB will have an estimated public float level of 30 per cent after the IPO, higher than the Philippine Stock Exchange’s (PSE) 10 per cent minimum requirement.

PBB is a part of the AMY Group, a conglomerate of companies owned by Chinese-Filipino businessman Alfredo Yao. Yao is also the owner of the Zest-O line of fruit juices and the majority owner of Zest Airways, a major domestic carrier.