MerryMart’s IPO signals PH resilience amid Covid-19

A TOP official of the Department of Finance said Monday, June 15, 2020 that the initial public offering (IPO) and stock market listing of grocery retailer MerryMart Consumer Corp. amid the coronavirus pandemic illustrates strong trust and confidence in an early and strong recovery of the Philippine economy from this global health crisis.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said the IPO of the MerryMart retail chain, owned by DoubleDragon’s Edgar “Injap” Sia II, is a good sign for the country’s economic recovery as it “represents an opportunity for investors to participate in the strong growth we anticipate in the coming period.”

Dominguez, Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) president and chief executive officer Ramon Monzon and Sia led the opening bell ceremony of the local bourse at the Bonifacio Global City trading floor in Taguig City to mark MerryMart’s listing on the small, medium and emerging board of the stock market.

“This initial public offering signals trust in our good economic prospects. It shares in the optimism that, notwithstanding the global downturn engulfing us today, the Philippine economy has the fundamentals to rise quickly from the devastation wrought by the pandemic,” Dominguez said during MerryMart’s listing ceremony.

“It is also a sterling example of how the government and the private sector can work together to inspire public confidence in our ability to quickly recover from the crisis,” he added.

The Finance chief said he expects MerryMart to make the robust retail sector “even merrier,” generate more jobs, stimulate the economy and promote competition in the industry as the country recovers from the Covid-19 crisis.

“In addition, MerryMart will contribute to further enhance our logistics system by bringing goods from the producers to the consumers at the least cost,” Dominguez said.

MerryMart’s IPO, which ran from May 27 to June 5, was the first in the local stock market this year. This IPO was oversubscribed and priced at the ceiling of the offer price of P1 per share even as the country and the rest of the world continue to grapple with the Covid-19 contagion.

The PNB Capital & Investment Corp. was the sole underwriter of the MerryMart offering.

On its trading debut Monday, MerryMart saw its price surge 50 percent to P1.50.

MerryMart currently has seven branches.

It aims to open six more branches by the second quarter of 2020, six additional branches by the third quarter of 2020, and have a total of 100 branches nationwide by the end of 2021. Its vision is to have 1,200 branches nationwide by 2030. (PR, CTL)