Andrew Tan's Megaworld to invest P7B in Clark

By Joey Pavia, BusinessMirror

Posted at Nov 30 2011 07:27 AM | Updated as of Nov 30 2011 07:08 PM

CLARK FREEPORT—Megaworld Corp., a listed property developer controlled by tycoon Andrew Tan, has signed a deal to develop a 550-hectare portion within the Clark Freeport Zone and Clark Special Economic Zone in Pampanga into a mixed-use complex.

The builder said the development will cost P7 billion.

On Tuesday  Tan, the chairman and president of Megaworld, and Clark Development Corp. President and CEO Felipe Antonio Remollo signed an agreement for the real-estate developer’s initial project in Clark, which will occupy 35 hectares at the site of an abandoned US military hospital.

Megaworld, a unit of listed holding company Alliance Global Group Inc., rose 1.69 percent to P1.80 each on Tuesday.

Tan said his project will generate at least 30,000 jobs.

Tan, who is also behind the Eastwood City, McKinley Hill and Newport City residential-business developments in Metro Manila, said the Clark project will include offices for business-process outsourcing (BPO) companies, as well as residential areas, including a haven for retirees. It will also have a commercial center, he said.

In a filing with the Philippine Stock Exchange on Tuesday, Megaworld said the complex will feature “office, commercial, retail, leisure and entertainment, residential and health and wellness components that can cater to foreign and local business-process outsourcing locators, retirement communities and tourism enterprises.”

Megaworld specializes in community-style developments that offer a mix of residential, retail and commercial projects. The company has six “township” developments across Metro Manila. Earlier this year, the company launched its first project outside the nation’s capital via the 55-hectare Iloilo Business Park.

Remollo said the entry of Tan will “pave the way for the entry of the other taipans in Clark.” He disclosed that he is set to meet with the Gokong-wei family next week for “another business venture in Clark,” besides Cebu Pacific, which already has a hub here.

In his speech, Tan said he was impressed with Remollo’s enthusiasm in promoting Clark to Japanese investors during  the recent visit of President Aquino to Japan earlier this year.

“They mentioned Clark to the Japanese businessmen more than a hundred times,” said Tan, drawing laughter from the CDC and Megaworld officials at the CDC boardroom.

Tan also hailed the Aquino administration’s  transparency and honesty in dealing with businessmen, “which is present at Clark and the CDC.” - With Miguel Camus, BusinessMirror