San Miguel sells PAL stake back to airline

San Miguel president and COO, Ramon Ang has confirmed the Philippines’ most diversified conglomerate has agreed to a US$1 billion deal to sell its stake in Philippine Airlines (PAL) back to the airline group.


San Miguel sells PAL stake back to airline


San Miguel president and COO, Ramon Ang has confirmed the Philippines’ most diversified conglomerate has agreed to a US$1 billion deal to sell its stake in Philippine Airlines (PAL) back to the airline group.

San Miguel owns 49 per cent of the parent of the listed holding company, PAL Holdings, that in turn controls about 90 per cent of the airline, which has a market value of about US$3.4 billion.

The conglomerate bought its stake in the flag carrier from Filipino- Chinese billionaire tycoon Lucio Tan for US$500 million in 2012, giving the conglomerate management control of PAL and affiliate Air Philippines. Ang has been widely credited with turning the ailing airline around, which recently posted in August its first profit in several years.

A few months after taking control of the airline in 2012, Ang had unveiled a US$10 billion programme as he sought to retire old jets with widebodied planes to beef up long-haul flights and expand domestic services.

The plan was to add 100 new aircraft to the carrier’s fleet within a period of five to seven years to make PAL competitive and profitable as rivals led by Philippine budget carrier operator Cebu Pacific Air made their own aggressive expansion moves.