National Book Store defers backdoor listing to next year

Posted at 05/05/14 8:16 AM

MANILA - The family that owns National Book Store has deferred the retailer’s plan for its backdoor listing to 2015, citing poor market conditions, particularly during the initial part of the year.

Adrian Paulino Ramos said the family implemented several projects in various businesses that it was not able to focus on the said listing plan. He said National Book Store may pursue the backdoor listing “probably by next year.”

“First, we are doing a lot of work internally; and second, we saw in the first quarter that the market was not [conducive to pursue the listing], so we didn’t push it,” Ramos said. Ramos is also an executive vice president at Atlas Consolidated Mining Corp., a company that his family partly owns along with the SM group.

Ramos said the company plans to put up 20 National Book Store branches this year, higher than last year’s 15 store openings. “We will fund our expansion this year mostly through internally generated cash and our usual credit facilities,” he said. National Book Store was supposed to use Vulcan Industrial and Mining Corp., another firm controlled by the Ramos family, for its backdoor listing at the Philippine Stock Exchange.

Backdoor listing occurs when a listed firm is acquired by privately held firm with that merger that will result into change in its primary business and purpose.

Vulcan’s board in May last year paved the way for the backdoor listing of the Ramos-owned firm and approved the change of its name to National Book Store Retail Corp. Vulcan also approved to change its primary purpose from mining and exploration to retail, and sold its mining and oil-exploration assets to Anglo Philippine Holdings Corp., another firm controlled by the Ramos family.

National Book Store was started by the company’s founder, Socorro Ramos, as a stall shop in Escolta, Manila, during the 1930s before the Japanese Occupation, selling supplies, novels and textbooks.

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