Ayala Land, Burmese supermarket operator tie up for maiden property project in Myanmar

MANILA – The real estate arm of the Ayala Group has teamed up with Myanmar’s leading supermarket chain City Mart for a mixed-use project in Yangon.

“I think what City Mart wants to do is they have properties that they want to convert. If I’m not mistaken, they plan retail establishments in Yangon,” Paolo Borromeo, Ayala Corp head of corporate strategy, said in a briefing following the listing of the conglomerate’s preferred shares.

Borromeo said Ayala Land Inc (ALI) and its partner have yet to finalize the details of the project.

Early this year, the property developer said it would undertake a $30-million residential development in Myanmar in partnership with a Burmese company.

“One of the big learnings for going abroad is the importance of partnerships in certain countries where you don’t know much about,” Borromeo said.

ALI’s venture into Myanmar is part of the Ayala Group’s broader plan to lend its expertise in some of its businesses to other countries in Southeast Asia. The real estate developer is also looking at opportunities in Vietnam while Manila Water Co Inc is eyeing projects in those two Asean countries and Indonesia.

“Our strategy is a bit different. We try to wait. We’re more patient when it comes to international business and we’ll take the opportunities as they come,” Borromeo said.

In August 2010, ALI entered the Chinese market after wholly-owned subsidiary Regent Wise Investments Ltdd signed an equity joint venture agreement with Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City Investment and Development Co Ltd (SSTEC) for a $220-million residential project on a nearly 10-hectare lot within Tianjin Eco-City.

However, ALI’s project in China suffered sluggish sales, feeling the pinch of a move to cool an overheated property market in the world’s second biggest economy.


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