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Damosa Land remains resilient amid pandemic

Industrial estate in Panabo shows promising opportunities for Mindanao to bounce back from the crisis

DLI First Vice President Ricardo Lagdameo in his interview with One News’ Daniela Laurel

Davao City's homegrown property developer Damosa Land Inc. has remained resilient amid the challenges of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

Damosa Land Inc. (DLI) Head Ricardo "Cary" Floirendo Lagdameo, in an interview with One News Business World Live's Daniela Laurel aired via Facebook on September 3, 2020, said, "The property sector has really felt the pinch but there are some bright spots you really have to see. The other kinds of segments that we are in, of course, tourism, is very much affected. Our hotels are also affected but our residential projects have been resilient, as well as our office buildings and industrial parks." He said these segments, according to experts, are going to survive the crisis.

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DLI is part of a business conglomerate in Mindanao, called Anflo Group, that is based in Davao City. The Anflo Group is more well-known for its agri businesses, port operations, manufacturing, and even resort operations. The real estate business under Damosa Land Inc. is one of its newer businesses.

Lagdameo said they were surprised that in May and June this year, on the height of rising Covid-19 cases in the country, there were still actual sales in their residential project and it was higher than they expected albeit lower than their target.

"We were pleased to see that people were spending on real estate and they are still seeing it as a good investment. At the end of the day, people are going to need homes to live in, companies need offices to operate in, and factories will need land to put their operations on. We see real estate as very resilient," he said, adding that it is the best time to invest since financing is on its all-time low. He, thus, encouraged credit worthy borrowers to borrow today due to the low rates.

The bulk of the company's income comes from the residential segment, with about 70 percent as against 30 percent recurring income from their offices and warehouses.

He said, "This is a challenge. Locally, we are staying afloat and staying okay over the past couple of months. There's been success slowly but surely." Lagdameo attributed this to the lighter quarantine classification in Davao Region and in most parts of Mindanao.

Promising industrial real estate

The Anflo Industrial Estate

The young honcho also noted an uptick in inquiries on the company's space for logistics operations, saying that they have the facilities to offer would-be investors. In the industrial segment, DLI has an estimated 20,000-square meter warehouse space in Panabo City with the half of it already taken up.

"We are optimistic about the prospect for our business moving forward. We’re in the advanced stages in our engagements with industrial locators," he said.

Lagdameo added that companies are looking into areas outside Metro Manila to invest in and Davao is an ideal place being a cost-effective business hub.

The industrial real estate in Mindanao looks even more promising in Mindanao and this paves a greater opportunity for the country’s premier agro-industrial hub, the 63-hectare Anflo Industrial Estate Corporation (AIEC), which was launched in 2016, to cater to both domestic and international exportations and further strengthen its agriculture-focused locators, which has been providing various jobs to its community.

AIEC’s proximity to the Davao International Container Terminal makes it a strategic avenue for growing products for the domestic and foreign markets as well as expanding businesses.

AIEC’s 19 local and international locators, who produce agricultural and packaging products, have provided vast job opportunities to some 6,000 Mindanaoans, surviving the ill effects of the pandemic and thriving despite the closure of other sectors.

Four new AIEC locators Southern Harvest, Inc., Connovate Philippines, PMR Pallet Ltd. Co., and Foampack, Inc. also employed 500 workers, giving the region’s economy a big boost. These are local companies geared towards expanding their operations in the South.

Southern Harvest produces and processes banana products for exports while Connovate Philippines acquired an exclusive production licensing agreement from Connovate Denmark who uses and produces innovative products that create property developments with less carbon footprint, 100-year material lifespan, fast construction, and insulation activities.

Foampack, Inc., meanwhile, is a foam manufacturing company that produces foam products used in the agri industry even as PMR Pallet Ltd. Co. produces wood pallets for domestic use.

“We have positioned and designed AIEC to further develop the vast potential of the agri-industry of Davao and Mindanao by providing a ready market for the region’s agri-produce and a platform to efficiently export them to the rest of the world,” Lagdameo said. ###

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