Del Monte Philippines focuses on product expansion after IPO delay

By Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte, Reporter

DEL Monte Philippines, Inc. (DMPI) said it will be focusing on product expansion and creating a stronger digital footprint via e-commerce after its parent firm announced the deferment of its listing at the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).

“The company will forge ahead in building momentum in convenience cooking as well as healthy beverages in the Philippines as more Filipinos focus on health and wellness as well as wholesome cooking amid the continuing pandemic,” DMPI Marketing Head Cynthia David Icasas said in an e-mailed response to BusinessWorld on Thursday.

On Wednesday last week, its listed parent company Del Monte Pacific Ltd. (DMPL) announced that it is delaying the company’s initial public offering (IPO). It was targeting to raise as much as P44 billion — the offer was scheduled to begin today, Aug. 9.

DMPL said the decision was brought by the “volatile market conditions” brought by the country’s coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) situation. However, it said it remains “committed to listing DMPI” once market conditions improve.

In the meantime, DMPI will be relaunching a new range of its healthy juice Fit ‘N Right products “in recognition of the evolving fitness goals of consumers.”

“The range also includes an improved core Fit ‘N Right product for those that choose weight loss, named BURN, soon to be available in leading supermarkets,” Ms. Icasas said.

DMPI also aims to sustain its fresh pineapples exports business in China, where it has been the market leader with a 53% share of exported pineapple. The company said it is also among the top exporters for premium fresh fruit in Japan and South Korea.

“The company will build on consumption frequency to support its leading brands via integrated marketing campaigns and promotions, both traditional and digital channels,” Ms. Icasas said.

DMPI plans to work on “cementing its footprint” online via its lifegetsbetter.ph website as well as its official Kitchenomics Facebook Page and the Del Monte Kitchenomics mobile app.

“Beyond recipes and cooking tips, the app enables users to prepare a meal plan, generate a shopping list, and order their favorite Del Monte products through Shopee and Lazada,” Ms. Icasas said.

DMPI is said to be Del Monte Pacific’s “most profitable subsidiary,” posting a net income growth of 33% to P4.6 billion in its financial year ending in April 2021. Results for its first quarter ending in July will be disclosed by Sept. 10.

On Friday, shares of listed parent Del Monte Pacific inched up by 2.05% or 28 centavos to close at P13.94 each.

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