BY MARCHEL P. ESPINA
The Philippine Competition Commission has approved the acquisition by Universal Robina Corporation of the assets of Roxas Holdings Inc., including the sugar milling and bioethanol distillery plants in La Carlota City, Negros Occidental.
PCC, on its website, yesterday said that the transaction involves the sugar milling, and bio-ethanol distillery assets of Central Azucarera de la Carlota Inc. and Roxol Bioenergy Corporation, respectively, the parcels of land of CA-Carlota and Roxol on which the assets are located, and the shares held by RHI in Najalin Agri-Ventures (NAVI).
The anti-trust body said that URC will acquire all buildings, improvements, machinery and equipment, laboratory equipment, and other related assets for operating the refinery and milling plant of CA-Carlota and the bioethanol plant of Roxol, as well as approximately 1,069,037 square meters and 391,826 square meters of land where the sellers’ assets are in La Carlota City, respectively.
URC is also set to acquire 520,115 NAVI common shares held by RHI and its nominee shareholders, it added.
The PCC said that URC is a Philippine company engaged in product packaging and food-related businesses, including branded consumer food, agro-industrial, and commodity food segments.
JG Summit Holdings Inc. is URC’s controlling shareholder and owns approximately 55 percent of outstanding shares, it added.
Meanwhile, RHI is a holding company that mainly invests in agribusiness, particularly sugar and ethanol.
It has majority ownership of NAVI, holding 67.1 percent of the issued shares. NAVI is primarily engaged in the business of agricultural and industrial development, which owns farmlands for lease in La Carlota City, the PCC said.
CA-Carlota is a wholly-owned subsidiary of RHI and is engaged in the business of manufacturing goods such as sugar, molasses, syrups, sweeteners, and other related products, it said, while Roxol is known for producing and selling bio-ethanol fuel with RHI directly owning approximately 20 percent of Roxol’s outstanding shares, and approximately 80 percent ownership indirectly through RHI’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Central Azucarera Don Pedro Inc.*