Philippine property firm DoubleDragon soars on market debut

MANILA (Reuters) - Shares of the Philippines' DoubleDragon Properties Corp jumped almost 40 per cent on their trading debut on Monday, as investors expressed confidence in the management to deliver on its planned projects.

DoubleDragon, a joint venture of Jollibee Foods Corp owner Tony Tan Caktiong and businessman Edgar Sia II's Injap Investments Inc, raised 1.16 billion pesos (S$32.5 million) in the country's first initial public offering (IPO) of 2014.

At the opening bell, the property company's share price was up 20 per cent and surged as much as 37.5 per cent in early trade.

That compared with a 0.04 per cent rise in the local property index and 0.6 per cent increase in the main share index.

DoubleDragon has "favourable long-term prospects and investors are confident in the management," said Papa Securities equity analyst Joanna Capiral.

On Monday, DoubleDragon said it is in the final stages of buying eight "prime" locations for its "CityMall" project.

The company "aims to reach one million sqm (square metres) of total leasable space portfolio by 2020, of which 70 per cent is expected to come from the planned 100 CityMall community malls," said Sia, who is DoubleDragon chairman and chief executive officer.

Demand for DoubleDragon shares was also high because the IPO was small enough for the market to accommodate, said Nieves Securities equity analyst Miko Sayo "It's a very light IPO, and there's big demand," Sayo said.

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