Benjie Yao plans Steel Asia IPO within 2 years
The country’s largest steel producer, Steel Asia Manufacturing Corp., plans to enter the local bourse in one to two years, its chairman and chief executive officer Benjamin Yao told reporters.
“Down the road, yes,” he answered when asked of the firm’s plan to hold an initial public offering (IPO). “We’re serious (with the plan). We behave like a public company anyway.”
Steel Asia is embarking on a six-year expansion plan worth P80 billion, with the first phase of putting up three integrated steel mills in Tarlac, Batangas, and Cebu.
Phase 1 of the expansion plan involves a $500-million investment or about P25 billion to manufacture steel products that are not yet produced locally, like sections and wire rods.
Yao said the company sees the opportunity to produce these products in the domestic market with the expected robust demand for steel products due to the infrastructure program of the government and construction projects of the private sector.
However, even with or without the planned IPO, Yao said the company has the capability to fund its P80-billion expansion program. (PNA)