By: Doris Dumlao-Abadilla – Reporter 

SOURCE: https://business.inquirer.net/343458/ayala-group-investing-p-13-6b-in-bpis-new-head-office

The Ayala group is investing about P13.6 billion to build the new head office of Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) along Ayala Avenue in Makati—designed to be a 45-story “iconic, elegant and green” skyscraper that will symbolize the storied conglomerate’s solid commitment to the country.

“This investment will help spur growth in the Philippine economy, spur many business activity and provide much needed employment opportunities for Filipinos,” Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, chair of BPI and Ayala Corp., said during the ground-breaking ceremony for the “grade-AAA” building on Tuesday.

This real estate redevelopment project is a partnership between BPI and Ayala Land Inc. (ALI), with a respective economic interest of 51 percent and 49 percent, respectively.

The project will create 1,800 new jobs, Zobel said, referring to the manpower needed to construct the building, which will be completed in the fourth quarter of 2029 and ready for occupancy by 2030.

Redefining the skyline of the Makati central business district, the future headquarters of Southeast Asia’s oldest bank will rise on its 5,599-square meter (sq m) lot at the corner of Ayala Avenue and Paseo de Roxas at an estimated height of 224 meters. It will have a gross floor area of 89,000 sq m, of which 60,000 sq m will be leasable.

The building can accommodate about 6,500 office workers from BPI and other corporate tenants.

Zobel said this new skyscraper would “symbolize our confidence in the future and Ayala group’s contribution to building a better Philippines.” He added that this demonstrated the group’s conviction that despite the challenging times caused by the two-year COVID-19 pandemic and the conflict in Europe, “Philippines will see brighter times ahead.”

BPI president Teodoro Jose Limcaoco said the future BPI head office would become “not just as workplace but an “environment where we can all learn, we can all grow and build lasting relationships.”

Based on today’s leasing rate of about P1,500/sqm month for office space in the Makati central business district, ALI may generate about P45 million per month in recurring leasing revenues from its share of half the leasable space in the project (about 30,000 sqms), ALI president Bernard Vincent Dy said in a joint press briefing with Limcaoco.

This suggests that the project can add about P540 million in annual rental revenues to ALI, without pricing in annual rental escalation.

As the building is not registered with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza) given the moratorium in the issuance of new accreditation, Dy said the property would likely attract more multinational country head office and other locators, rather than business process outsourcing (BPO) firms. However, he said the group would seek Peza accreditation once such option was available.

The building itself will have an energy-saving, 100 percent glass facade. Located at the heart of the Makati Central Business District at the corners of Ayala Avenue, Paseo de Roxas, and Dela Rosa, the masterplan maximizes land efficiency while providing a generous civic space that seamlessly connects to Makati’s underground and elevated walkways.

At the street level, the property will have an 800-sqm civic space for the public to “stimulate progressive thinking.”

The plan was conceptualized by global design firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) in collaboration with the architect-of-record, Aidea Philippines Inc.