Story & photo by Efleda P. Campos / Senior Editor
CEBU Landmasters Inc. (CLI), the acknowledged homegrown leader in housing development in Cebu, is allotting P12 billion for its 11 expansion projects this year.
The company is eyeing six new projects in Cebu, five in the Visayas and Mindanao, and two next-phase developments of existing projects, said Jose Soberano III, CLI president and CEO.
He said they plan to undertake developments in six cities in the VisMin area, all considered “hot spots”. These are Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, Bacolod, Iloilo, Dumaguete and Davao.
“General Santos and Bohol are also possibilities,” he added.
Soberano said his company does not accumulate much land bank. “We develop property within a year of acquisition.”
He said, “We are looking at issuing an initial public offering in either March or April this year.”
The company is also eyeing making P4 billion in revenue this year and reaching P10 billion in revenues by 2020. CLI, run by Soberano and his family, started doing business in 2003. At present, it has an 11-percent share of the housing market in Cebu, next only to Ayala Land with its 17-percent share.
“Today we are the No. 1 housing developer in Cebu. We see ourselves becoming the top land developer in the Visayas and Mindanao areas by 2020,” he said.
Soberano said the company’s business is 80 percent focused on housing and 20 percent on hotel, office lease and property management. About 30 percent of their buyers purchase condos. Many are overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) hailing from the province and nearby locations.
“Our company’s mission is to build affordable housing for the city’s residents,” said Maria Rosario Soberano, CLI EVP, and the family’s matriarch. “Our goal is to help them own homes close to the city’s centers, close to work, their church, city hospitals and grocery stores.”
Many of the company’s buyers are workers in the business-process outsourcing (BPO) industry, comprising 12 percent of the country’s BPO sector. About 30 percent of their buyers are OFWs.
Son Jose Franco B. Soberano, the company’s SVP and COO, said CLI has a work force of 170 employees.
“At the height of our construction activities last year, when we had eight projects in various stages of completion, we were indirectly employing 10,000 local workers, hired by our contractor partners, both based in Metro Manila and the province.”
“Our company believes in ‘building with you in mind’. We want to grow in a way that people can still touch us,” he said.
Daughter Joanna Marie B. Soberano, CLI vice president and marketing director, said a sales team that went to the Middle East recently was able to sell P300 million worth of housing development in five days, mostly to OFWs.
“We are also looking at Metro Manila-based people who hail from Mindanao,” she said.
Image credits: Efleda P. Campos