Strategic Business Units and Investments

Universal Robina Corporation

“With the reopening of economies across Asia, coupled with the strength of our core products and new launches, URC ended 2022 on a high, growing revenue by 28%. There were challenges along the way with cost headwinds and supply chain disruptions affecting the business. However, URC was able to rise above the difficulties through the organization's hard work. By strengthening our supply chain, sales, and distribution fundamentals, we were able to focus on and take care of our customers, provide value for our consumers, and create more meaningful breakthroughs.”

Irwin C. Lee

President and Chief Executive Officer

Record-breaking sales and new product development launches

Despite the economic environment and high inflation, Universal Robina Corporation (URC) saw sequential sales growth driven by Branded Consumer Foods Group (BCF), hitting record-high monthly and quarterly sales. Additionally, all businesses grew in double digits leading total topline growth to surge by 28%.

In line with URC’s purpose of delighting everyone with good food choices, the company continues to provide consumers with well-loved products and brands by launching new developments to widen its product portfolio. In 2022, URC entered into two entirely new beverage categories with the launch of Goodday Cultured Milk and Chill Spiked Spirit. URC’s new product pipeline remains robust not only in the Philippines but across Southeast Asia, with over 9% of branded sales in 2022 coming from products launched over the last three years.

Agile@Scale and digitalization drive efficiency and better strategies

URC scaled up its Agile program, going beyond BCFG Philippines with pilot projects in its International and Agro-Industrial and Commodities divisions. This enabled the company to achieve visible and impactful results in the areas of business growth, innovation, cost and efficiencies, and employee engagement. These efficiencies allowed URC to thrive despite the cost pressures throughout the year.

Additionally, investments in digital solutions, data quality, and access improvements were prioritized to ensure better data-driven decision-making. More than 90% of live projects are on track, which includes end-to-end dashboards to improve operations and connections to consumers, portals, and chatbots for better employee experience, digital enablement for Sales and e-commerce, and more. To support the company's competencies and digital capability building, URC provided learning opportunities such as the IT Academy: a centralized portal featuring over 800 digital learning materials.

Strengthening sustainability strategies across One URC

URC remains committed and steadfast in its efforts to be a Sustainable Global Enterprise and achieve its Sustainability Agenda. Driven by this ambition, the company set forth a transformative roadmap and refined its strategies over the years. The company has conducted a 10-session Sustainability Learning series to strengthen engagement and boost capability and awareness on six sustainability focus areas: people, product, water, climate, packaging, and sourcing. Simultaneously, URC established Agile Squads to efficiently and effectively further our progress in Climate Action and Plastic Neutrality projects.

To drive these strategies and strengthen our commitment and initiatives, the Sustainability Transformation Office Steering Committee was formed in 2022, headed by the President & CEO, joined by key leaders experienced in the field of Environmental, Social, and Governance. The Sustainability Transformation Office has 2 subcomponents: (1) Project Management and (2) Center of Excellence (COE) and Capability Building with cross-functional members from the organization. This team provides a holistic viewpoint in strategizing and implementing initiatives aligned with the six key focus areas and material topics.

Robinsons Land Corporation

“We achieved record profitability in 2022 on the strength of a fully reopened economy and robust consumer spending. Our strategic investments and key initiatives continue to fuel our growth across all our businesses. In 2023, we will drive portfolio expansion and key innovations in pursuit of serving our customers better and creating sustainable value for stakeholders.”

Frederick D. Go

President and Chief Executive Officer

RLC continues to expand its presence across the Philippines

Throughout 2022, Robinsons Land Corporation (RLC) opened multiple properties across its various business units in Luzon and Visayas. Among these are RLC’s second mall in Nueva Ecija and the extension of Robinsons Place Antipolo, which added a combined total of 24,000 sqm of gross leasable area (GLA). Robinsons Malls also welcomed new establishments and improved tenant mix to increase foot traffic.
For offices, the Company likewise strengthened its portfolio with the completion of three new office developments - Cybergate Galleria Cebu, Cybergate Iloilo 2, and Cybergate Bacolod 2 - and three workable facilities, in time for the return of onsite work in a fully reopened economy.

With the permanent easing of restrictions, RLC also introduced hotels in various market segments, with the opening of Fili in NUSTAR Resort in Cebu, Summit Hotel Naga, Go Hotel Plus Naga, and Go Hotel Plus Tuguegarao. Fili is the Philippines’ first homegrown 5-star hospitality brand that brings together the finest hotel offerings and the distinct warmth of Filipino service.

RLC also launched five residential properties, consisting of multiple condominiums and a housing development, spread across the Greater Manila Area and Cebu. These are AmiSa Private Residences Tower D in Cebu, SYNC N Tower in Pasig, Woodsville Crest Pine in Parañaque, Sierra Valley Gardens Building 3 in Rizal, and Springdale Baliwag in Bulacan.

Agile methodology improves customer experience and sustainability initiatives

In order to quickly implement and continuously improve its various initiatives, RLC implemented agile ways of working. The Company developed a newer version of its mobile app with additional and up-to-date features, which resulted in better engagement and enhanced customer satisfaction. Similarly, for its sustainability initiatives, RLC increased its impact on plastic waste management through activities executed in partnership with other members of the conglomerate.

Paving a sustainable path through solar panels and green building certifications

Recognized as the country’s largest solar-powered mall operator, RLC currently has 24 malls with a total of almost 100,000 solar panels installed on their rooftops as of the end of 2022. Through this project, the Company has avoided about 100,000 MT of carbon emissions, which is equivalent to 1.6 million trees planted. RLC is committed to expanding the project to more malls nationwide.

Read more

In addition, Giga Tower, a 29-story premium-grade office building in Bridgetowne Destination Estate, secured a Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) Gold certification in 2022 for integrating sustainable features in its design and development.

Giga Tower’s covered parking area, as well as all its paving and rooftops, comply with the Solar Reflectance Index (SRI). This means that the building can reflect enough solar energy to maximize solar power. Other than having multiple energy-saving features, Giga Tower also makes use of non-CFC refrigerant (R-410A) to reduce stratospheric ozone depletion.

Read more

Meanwhile, Cyberscape Gamma received the Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) certification in October 2022. As a matter of policy, RLC has committed to securing green certifications for all new Metro Manila office buildings.

Read more

These initiatives form part of RLC’s continued investment toward its sustainability goals. They are at the core of the Company’s strategy aimed at providing comfortable and healthy spaces to live, work, and play.

Cebu Air, Inc.

“In 2022, despite the ongoing challenges faced by the aviation industry due to COVID-19 and economic volatilities such as rising fuel prices and peso depreciation, Cebu Pacific remained steadfast in its commitment to providing affordable air travel to every Juan. I am proud to share that Cebu Pacific led the travel recovery in the Philippines, further solidifying its position as the country’s top airline.

By the end of the year, the airline had successfully restored 92% of its pre-pandemic capacity on both domestic and international operations, thanks to the gradual easing of travel restrictions and the airline’s ability to respond to market needs and opportunities.

Turning the page to 2023 marks a new and exciting chapter for Cebu Pacific and every Juan. We are poised and prepared to go from recovery mode to growth mode and welcome even more passengers on board in the coming months. Let’s Fly Every Juan!”

Michael B. Szucs

Chief Executive Officer

A strong start for CEB’s post-pandemic recovery period

2022 marked the year where Cebu Pacific (CEB) saw steep progress and recovery from the pandemic.

Despite the early headwinds brought by Omicron surge and macroeconomic uncertainties, CEB is proud to have led the Philippines’ travel recovery, restoring 92% of its systemwide capacity versus pre-pandemic period. This consequently led to a stronger demand for travel enabling the airline to fly over 108 thousand flights and 14.8 million passengers, a 214% and 335% increase respectively, year-on-year.

Travel rebound started in the second quarter as the strong summer peak was supported by declining covid cases and higher vaccination rates. CEB’s strong focus on domestic recovery—as other players put their focus elsewhere—allowed the airline to emerge as a stronger leader in the domestic market. For the full year 2022, CEB’s market share was at 57%, which is 5 percentage points higher compared to its pre-pandemic share of 52%. Moreover, we note that Domestic capacity has already exceeded 2019 levels in 2Q.

On the other hand, CEB’s international recovery accelerated during the second half of the year. The airline increased regional flight frequencies, restarted flights to Brunei, Kota Kinabalu, and Sydney, and resumed international flights out of its Cebu hub. As North Asian countries like South Korea and Japan waived their pre-arrival test and quarantine requirements, CEB further ramped up its flights and capacity, ultimately resulting in the restoration of 19 destinations, 22 routes, and over 370 weekly flights.

With that, CEB flew over 108 thousand flights and 14.8 million passengers, a 214% and 335% increase respectively, year-on-year. Despite facing unprecedented headwinds, CEB is confident in its ability to overcome these while remaining true to its commitment to enable every Juan to fly.

Agile transformation continues to aid recovery and growth

CEB’s agile transformation initiatives kicked off in 2019 and is expected to be completed by Q3 2023. This multi-year agile program is a re-architecture and redesign of the airline’s fronted digital channels such as Web and Mobile apps. The objectives of the program are as follows:

  • Promote customer focus by efficiently converting visitors and driving customer loyalty through consistent and best-in-class digital experience.
  • Increase digital proficiency through an Omnix platform that provides consistent and frictionless experience.
  • Strengthen CEB’s brand positioning as the enabler of travel possibilities for every Filipino.

Cebu Pacific participates in humanitarian efforts

Throughout 2022, Cebu Pacific continued to partner with government agencies and civic organizations to provide air transport services for humanitarian efforts and disaster relief. CEB has transported 21 million vaccine doses to 31 provinces and has repatriated hundreds of Filipinos through the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)-arranged flights.

On disaster relief, flights for medical personnel, assorted medicines, and medical equipment from the Department of Health (DOH) were provided in partnership with the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF) and the Office of Civil Defense as part of an urgent medical mission to aid Typhoon Odette-impacted communities. The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) also tapped CEB’s logistical support to expedite the delivery of relief items to affected areas.

Read more

Operating its first SAF-powered flight

Cebu Pacific operated on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for the first time in May 2022 on a delivery flight of a brand new A330neo from France to the Philippines. In line with its sustainable initiatives, blended SAF will be a standard procedure for all future Airbus NEO deliveries. That same year on September 28, an international flight from Singapore to Manila was also powered by sustainable fuel, becoming the first Philippine carrier to incorporate SAF in its commercial operations.

For the maiden SAF flight, CEB utilized its A321neo. The A321neo offers the widest single-aisle cabin in the sky, incorporated with the latest technology, and new generation engines and Sharklets, which reduces fuel consumption per seat by 20% compared to the previous A320 aircraft.

A long-term strategic partnership was also signed with Shell Eastern Petroleum to collaborate on making SAF more accessible, demonstrating the two parties’ commitment to decarbonization and sustainability. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) explores the supply and purchase of SAF in Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, with an initial supply volume of at least 25 kilotons per year.

JG Summit Olefins Corporation

“2022 was a very challenging year for our petrochemical business. Global market conditions have affected both JGSOC and the entire industry, as demand shrinkage, rise in raw materials costs, and logistical issues heavily affected petrochemical margins worldwide. Despite these challenges, we have been able to begin commercial operations for our butadiene extraction unit as well as complete the construction work for our third polyethylene (PE) plant, both of which led us to launch an expanded product portfolio.

Various operational and process improvements were implemented to prepare our facilities to run at full capacity and for functional teams to be capable of handling this expanded scope of business.

Through our sustainability initiatives, we have progressed with our solar rooftop power projects that will allow us to source up to 13.8 MW of renewable energy. Moreover, we have achieved our halfway milestone target for our 1M Trees project.

Now that we are at the completion stage of our complex-wide expansion project, we are in a better position to seize opportunities and capture immediate value as soon as market conditions improve. I believe that through these challenges, we will emerge a stronger and better organization that is fully equipped to meet the needs of all our stakeholders.”

Patrick Henry C. Go

President and CEO

Commissioning of new plants to expand JGSOC’s product offerings

JG Summit Olefins Corporation (JGSOC) commenced its commercial operations of the first and only Butadiene Extraction Plant in the Philippines in Q1 of 2022. Able produce around 70 kilotons per annum (KTA) of butadiene and 110 KTA of raffinate-1, this facility processes mixed C4 produced from the upstream naphtha cracker to extract the downstream products of butadiene and raffinate-1, using the BASF Process licensed from Lummus Technology. While the products are currently 100% exported, the local availability of butadiene and raffinate-1 can generate interest in future investments downstream, particularly for synthetic rubber producers and/or tire manufacturers, thereby helping to open up potential forward linkages to this sector.

Additionally, JGSOC has completed the construction of its third polyethylene (PE) plant that will produce 250 KTA of PE. The PE 3 plant uses the MarTECH™ loop slurry process, one of the world’s leading processes for manufacturing PE, licensed by Chevron Phillips Chemical. The MarTECH™ loop slurry process will allow JGSOC to produce bimodal metallocene and bimodal metallocene PE grades. The expected start of commercial operations for the third PE plant is within 2023.

Agile transformation yields efficiencies and cost savings

JGSOC Agile was launched in March 2022, to help the organization identify areas where value can be captured early, by generating profits and savings, cutting losses, improving efficiency, unlocking hidden potentials, developing a responsive culture on solving problems, and transforming JGSOC culture to adopt Agile Ways of Working. As of December 2022, 33 projects with a projected value of Php 1.4 billion were launched. More than half of the projects were already completed, with about Php 257 million in combined profits and savings. More than 650 employees were trained with 176 joining various Agile projects.

In addition, the JGSOC Agile Center of Excellence (CoE) was established last July 2022, to pursue building Agile capabilities, deliver potential value impact, ensure all projects have sustainability action plans, and fortify efforts on JGSOC’s Road to Agile Transformation.

Some exemplary Agile projects to highlight are the Oily Waste Water Management and Recovery, Energy Balance, and Order to Cash.

The Oily Waste Water Management and Recovery project reduced the cost of disposing and treating the high volume of mixed oil, water, and chemicals with an early value of Php 673,000.

For the Energy Balance project, the group looked for ways to minimize high levels of bunker fuel oil imports, curtail losses during steam and fuel gas flaring, and lessen the deviation of fuel consumption between the planning model and actual consumption. This project reduced bunker fuel consumption worth Php 223 million. It also identified potential savings of Php 380 million per year should the parameters applied in addressing the issues are fastidiously maintained.

Lastly, the Order to Cash Agile project allowed Peak Fuel Corp. (JGSOC’s fuel trading arm) to generate more cash for the Company when it explored and improved processes in fuel ordering, credit management, payment, and truck loading. Allowing weekend sales increased profit by Php 891,000, while the time of truck loading and crediting of payment was reduced, thereby satisfying customer needs.

Sustainability efforts continued throughout the year

In 2022, JGSOC’s One Million Trees Project reached an important milestone. The project was able to plant and distribute 565,298 indigenous and fruit-beating tree seedlings in Batangas province and to various government agencies, civic groups, schools, and employee volunteers. Launched in 2016, One Million Trees aims to contribute to the regreening and reforestation of areas where it is needed.

JGSOC also joined the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, affirming its commitment to plastic waste reduction. The Alliance was established in 2019 and continues to grow its current member base of more than 70 global companies. As a member, JGSOC aims to support the Alliance’s work of reducing plastic waste through recycling and diversion via the project portfolios that it develops, finances, and implements with its members.

Read more

Lastly, Phase 1 of Merbau Corporation’s 5.8 MW Solar Rooftop project was completed in December 2022, which shall supply solar energy to the petrochemical complex. Construction for Phase 2 of 8 MW is also ongoing and is set to be completed in mid-2023. The project aims to offset the sourcing of power from the national grid and from in-house diesel generators with renewable energy, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 17,000 metric tons equivalent CO2 per annum.

Robinsons Bank Corporation

“2022 marked Robinsons Bank’s silver anniversary.
Reaching 25 years in the industry was a momentous event for us. Having started as a humble bank, its rapid growth over the past years has paved the way for it to be one of the Fastest Growing Commercial Banks in the country, for four consecutive years. A feat such as this deserves a meaningful celebration. RBank’s 25th Anniversary Celebration commemorates its early beginnings, its extraordinary journey, and the people behind the brand that has touched hundreds of thousands of lives throughout the years.

As we reflect on the hard work that every RBanker contributed to delivering where the Bank is today, we take pride in how the assets have expanded from Php 538 million in 1997 to Php 183 billion in 2022. Robinsons Bank has come a long way since then, currently ranking 16th among the universal and commercial banks in the country.”

Elfren Antonio S. Sarte

President and Chief Executive Officer

Exceptional operational performance for RBank’s 25th year

In 2022, RBank delivered another stellar performance with a record net income of Php 1.4 billion which jumped by 15% from Php 1.2 billion amid a challenging 2021.

RBank’s total assets in 2022 reached Php 187.8 billion. This was supported by the build-up in lending portfolios and treasury investments. Among the country’s 46 universal and commercial banks (UKBs), RBank’s performance improved its industry ranking to 16th place from 17th in 2021. Despite rising interest rates, RBank’s gross loan portfolio expanded by 13% this year, surpassing the 100-billion mark, by reaching Php 112.5 billion from Php 99.2 billion last year. This was supported by the 18% growth in consumer loans and the 10% improvement in commercial loans. The growth in consumer loans was driven by the strong performance of real estate loans, which jumped to Php 34.3 billion from Php 29.7 billion in 2021. Performing better than the industry, RBank’s ranking in terms of total loans among UKBs improved by a notch to 14th from 15th in 2021.

RBank’s capital jumped to Php 20 billion, which is 8% higher than the end-2021 results. The Bank’s capital adequacy ratio at 13.4% and common equity tier ratio at 12.7% are both above the minimum regulatory requirements.

Agile Transformation seen in RBank’s Digital App Features

Throughout the year, RBank utilized agile transformation to improve the products and services it offers to its customers. As one of the banks that can cater to its customers’ digital needs, the Bank takes pride in being able to maximize its app, RBank Digital (RDX). These developments include the Unit Investment Trust Fund (UITF) Auto-Invest, Electronic Financial Statements (e-FS) for Trust and Investment Accounts, QR PH, and Online Time Deposits.

RDX also gained a new security feature that helps prevent fraudulent access. This allows users to provide or restrict access to their user ID in web browsers, which is a way of stopping phishing attacks.

Using an agile methodology gave RBank the ability to quickly launch these features and address any issues that appear, keeping customers happy and satisfied.

RBank continues to propel financial inclusion and gives back to the community

In partnership with Premiumbikes Corporation (PBC), one of the Philippines’ top motorcycle dealership chains, RBank continues its agency banking facility called RBankMo. Through this partnership, RBank can provide financial services to customers living in rural communities with limited access to traditional banking services.

Over 98% of PBC’s branches became RBankMo outlets where customers can open new accounts and access various financial services on their mobile phones. Throughout 2022, RBankMo saw a total transaction value of around Php 62 million, with PBC stores processing Php 400,000 in daily transactions, indicating strong demand for mobile banking services in these communities.

This partnership demonstrates the power of collaboration in expanding financial inclusion and promoting digital banking services in underserved areas. Its success underscores the importance of broadening the reach of banking facilities by bridging the gap between traditional banking services in unbanked and underbanked communities.

At the same time, RBank celebrated its 25th anniversary by launching The Future is Bright, a scholarship program in partnership with the Gokongwei Brothers Foundation (GBF). The Bank successfully raised Php 320,000 throughout the 1-year campaign and donated the proceeds on its anniversary celebration last November 25, 2022. This illustrates how financial institutions can leverage on technology to drive social impact, give back to communities, and provide customers with a simple and convenient way to create a brighter future for Filipinos.

Read more