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Monday, October 27, 2014

Profit growth picks up pace for Meralco at end-September

Meralco's earnings rose in the high single-digits in the first nine months of the year on the back of demand from the industrial and commercial segments of its market.

In a media briefing, Betty Siy-Yap, Manila Electric Co chief financial officer, said the utility's nine-month net income increased by 7 percent to P14.3 billion from P13.6 billion in the same period last year.

Its core net income, which excludes onetime gains or losses, rose by about the same level.

The increase in profit was driven by a 2.5 percent hike in energy sales volume to 26,253 gigawatt-hours from 25,616 last year.

Sales in the first half of the year had been sluggish on account of the cooler weather, typhoons and energy conservation. Profit grew only by 2.1 percent to P9.6 billion from P9.4 billion in 2013.

Oscar S. Reyes, Meralco president, said the increase in electricity demand was led by a 3.9 percent growth in sales to industrial customers to 8,081 gigawatt-hours this year from 7,770 gigawatt-hours last year.

Fueling the increase were the food and beverage, basic metals, rubber, and plastics sectors.

Meralco's commercial accounts grew 3.1 percent from 9,965 gigawatt-hours to 10,278 gigawatt-hours on the back of higher demand from real estate, retail trade, and tourism.

"Residential was able to turn around from negative in the first six months with a pick-up in September to a little bit better than flat at 0.3 percent growth from 7,775 gigawatt-hours to 7,796 gigawatt-hours," Reyes said.

Meralco's customers grew by 4 percent year-on-year to 5.5 million in the first nine months, the highest growth in 15 years, he said.

Meralco chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said core profit guidance for 2014 stands at P17.8 billion, which is 4.6 percent higher than last year's P17 billion.

- Interaksyon

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