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Emperador expands public float to 20%, meets PSE requirement

EMPERADOR, Inc. has increased its public float to 20.1% from the 15.7% level reflected at the end of September 2022, which the company attributed to a greater demand caused by its dual listing.

“The increase in float reflects the robust investor appetite for Emperador stock and should improve liquidity of the shares,” the company said in a press release on Tuesday.

In July, the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) rebalanced the 30-member index and announced that it would be the last index recomposition with a free float requirement of at least 15%.

The rebalancing kicked out Security Bank Corp. from the main index and was replaced by Consunji-led Semirara Mining and Power Corp., which was found qualified to be a member of the index during the last index review that ran from July 2021 to June 2022.

Luis A. Limlingan, head of sales of Regina Capital Development Corp. said that the increase in the public float of Emperador was necessary to remain in the main index.

“A year ago, PSE already released a memorandum wherein they will raise the minimum public float requirement to 20% from the current 15% by the end of this year. It appears that Emperador is simply complying to these changes by the exchange,” Mr. Limlingan said.

“Since Emperador already increased its public float to 20.1%, only San Miguel Corp. has a free float below 20% among the 30 index stocks as of the latest filing,” he added.

“The higher float is a sign of increased market interest after it is listed in Singapore,” Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said in a Viber message.

“It is also a sign of internationalization and globalization of its business and its roster of investors,” Mr. Ricafort added. 

At the last index review, the 30 index names have a minimum public float requirement of 15%, while those that do not belong to the top 30 have a 10% minimum float requirement.

However, the PSE increased the public float requirement to 20% which will be required this month, as stated in a memorandum posted by the bourse operator in August last year.

The move is in line with the PSE’s policy requiring all companies conducting an initial public offering to have at least a 20% minimum public ownership.

“There were even proposals to increase the public float further to increase market liquidity that leads to better pricing as well in the market,” Mr. Ricafort said.

The PSE said in July that the increased required public ownership level of at least 20% to qualify for index inclusion will be effective in the next review period.

Emperador, a global brandy and whisky company, is listed company on both the PSE and the Singapore stock exchange. — Justine Irish D. Tabile

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