DEAR FELLOW SHAREHOLDERS
I am pleased to report that First Pacific has delivered its strongest-ever earnings in 2021 notwithstanding pressures from the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. Turnover and recurring profit rose to record highs. I could not think of a better way to mark the 40th anniversary of First Pacific’s founding back in 1981.
Our businesses are diversified geographically in Southeast Asia and across sectors – in consumer foods, telecommunications, infrastructure and natural resources. They all share a broad commitment to earning their income from delivering the products and services that consumers in the fast-growing economies of our region want and need. Our model sustains us in difficult times when demand is low and raises our earnings in periods of economic upswing. It has served us well these past 40 years.
All of our investee companies improved their contribution to First Pacific, led by Indofood with the first full-year contribution from Pinehill and strong demand growth in its domestic market. As the Philippines gradually lifted movement restrictions, MPIC’s several businesses returned to growth. PLDT benefitted from continuing strong growth in demand for data services, led by the residential broadband offered by its Home business. Philex benefitted from surging metal prices.
Last year, as in 2020, management and staff in all our businesses showed resilience and compassion in the nonfinancial aspects of our shared responsibility to stakeholders. In Indonesia we donated food for millions of families struggling in the COVID-19 crisis and delivered personal protective equipment and medical equipment to dozens of medical institutions across the country. In the Philippines, our Tulong Kapatid and investee companies made similar charitable efforts in its pandemic response and raised funds and delivered aid to victims of Typhoon Odette.
I am proud of these efforts on behalf of our fellows and I am confident that we can be depended on in the future when help is needed. Our cohort of more than 120,000 fellow colleagues amount up to a very strong team.
In reviewing their efforts and accomplishments during the past year, I am confident that we are well placed for continuing earnings growth to new records in the years ahead. As we have shown in our pandemic response, we are people you can depend on.
31 March 2022