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Top Frontier maps expansion, plans expressways

TOP FRONTIER Investment Holdings, Inc., the largest shareholder of listed conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC), has outlined the group’s plans for the coming years, including the expansion of its expressway projects.

“Our company’s strategic thrust is to continue the expansion of the existing businesses such as food and beverages,” said Top Frontier President and Chief Executive Ramon S. Ang during the company’s virtual annual stockholders meeting held on Friday.

“I think I may take the whole afternoon explaining about the expansion,” he added.

Mr. Ang said the construction of expressways and skyways would give greater access to New Manila International Airport, an ongoing project in Bulakan, Bulacan.

The company plans to expand Metro Manila Skyway Stage 3 (MMSS-3) to go through Sgt. Rivera in Quezon City to Road 10 (R-10) and Bulacan airport. It aims to shorten the travel time from Manila Hotel to the Bulacan airport to 15 minutes by car.

In addition to the expansion in MMSS-3 — an elevated expressway from Buendia, Makati City to the North Luzon Expressway in Balintawak, Quezon City — the company also plans to construct airport access through Tullahan.

Top Frontier plans to have at least eight new access to the Bulacan airport through the construction of more airport access in expressways: North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) through Mabalacat, Pampanga; NLEX through Tabang, Bulacan; and NLEX through Marilao, Bulacan.

The company also plans to build EDSA Buendia exit through MMSS-3 north and south-bound, which it will further on extend to Macapagal Ave., to NAIA Expressway (NAIAx) and to Manila-Cavite Toll Expressway (CAVITEx) plaza. It also disclosed a plan to build EDSA-Tramo-NAIAx, which will eventually be connected to the R-10 link.

In tollways, the company plans to build a 64-kilometer (km) Toll Road 4, which will be from Santo Tomas, Batangas to Lucena, Quezon, a 417-km Toll Road 5, which will be from Lucena, Quezon to Matnog, Sorsogon, and an expansion of Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEx) from Rosario, La Union first phase to San Juan, La Union and eventually to Laoag, Ilocos Norte.

Aside from expressway expansions, Mr. Ang also outlined expansions in its food and beverages business. The company is building six new breweries of two million hectoliters and is expanding its integrated poultry business of 960 million birds per year capacity to be ready-to-eat. A hectoliter is equivalent to 100 liters.

The company also has plans to expand power generation through the expansion of its clean energy and battery storage facilities, which is aimed at addressing a shortage in the current base load.

“Our company is in full blast — all its existing businesses and much, much more. We are also expanding into our cement manufacturing, we are expanding our bank — our Bank of Commerce is now a universal bank, and so much more,” Mr. Ang said.

“All businesses delivered strong results in the first quarter of 2022. Varying any surge in COVID cases we are confident that all our businesses will benefit from the opening of more sectors of the economy and be able to sustain [the company’s] growth in the full year 2022,” Top Frontier Director Aurora T. Calderon said during the same meeting.

In the first quarter, Top Frontier reported a decrease in attributable net income by 45.01% to P1.99 billion from the P3.62 billion recorded in the same period last year.

Meanwhile, it recorded an increase in revenues to P316.76 billion from the P201.16 billion recorded in the January-March period last year.

Listed holding firm Top Frontier holds a 65.99% stake in SMC. Other than its ownership in SMC and Clariden Holdings, Inc., the company has no other operations as of Dec. 31, 2021.

In the stock market on Friday, shares of Top Frontier remained unchanged at 117.00 apiece. — Justine Irish DP. Tabile

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