ACEN targets P25B from preferred shares offering

ACEN Corp. is looking to raise P25 billion by offering preferred shares as the Ayala-led energy company moves to diversify its funding sources to more institutional and retail investors.
In a stock exchange disclosure on Wednesday, ACEN said it had filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission the shelf registration of up to 50-million preferred shares, which includes a proposed public offer and sale of up to 25-million preferred shares.
The shelf-registered shares may be offered in one or more tranches and may be comprised of one or more series per tranche. The proposed public offer is comprised of 12.5-million preferred shares with an oversubscription option of up to 12.5-million preferred shares priced at P1,000 apiece.
ACEN also submitted an application with the Philippine Stock Exchange, Inc. for the listing of the shares. It said the proposed sale will be offered as the first tranche under its preferred shares program.
In the company’s disclosure on March 8, it said its board of directors had approved an amendment to its article of incorporation to create preferred shares by reclassifying 100 million unissued common shares. Shareholders approved the reclassification on April 24.
It said the creation of preferred shares is intended to diversify its sources of funding and “to enable access to a wider base of institutional and retail investors.”
Last week, ACEN announced that its board of directors had approved a plan to borrow about P7.8 billion from Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. and China Banking Corp.
Eric T. Francia, president and chief executive officer of ACEN, said the company was continuing its effort to fund its renewable energy expansion target.
“These are just ongoing financing initiatives that we have to support all our renewable energy expansions,” Mr. Francia told reporters in a recent media gathering.
ACEN has estimated to spend up to $8 billion to roll out its 8-gigawatt (GW) portfolio of clean energy projects in the Philippines by 2030. The company has also said that it will fast-track the development of its project to at least 2 GW per year.
For 2023, ACEN is setting aside between P50 billion and P70 billion as its capital expenditure budget to fund its clean energy goals.
ACEN has around 4,200 megawatts of attributable capacity spread across the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, India, and Australia.
The Ayala group’s energy arm is aiming to expand its portfolio to 20 GW by 2030, while also targeting to transition its power generation to fully renewable energy by 2025.
In the first quarter, ACEN registered a net income of P2.03 billion attributable to its parent equity holder, or about five times higher than the P405.03 million recorded in the same period last year.
Gross revenues during the period reached P9.14 billion, up 23.5% from P7.4 billion a year earlier. The bulk of its top line came from the sale of electricity at P9.02 billion, which increased 22.6% from P7.36 billion in the previous year.
At the local bourse on Wednesday, shares in the company fell by five centavos or 0.81% to end at P6.15 apiece. — Ashley Erika O. Jose