First Metro bares new business strategy

December 22, 2020

First Metro Investment Corporation, the investment banking arm of the Metrobank Group, is embarking on a new business strategy as it adapts to the changing market and business environment.

“In view of the changes in the market and overall business environment, the evolving regulatory conditions, and realignment with the Metrobank Group strategy, First Metro is embarking on a transformation initiative that involves the company’s products and services,” said First Metro president Jose Patricio Dumlao.

“We plan to strengthen our core business of investment banking and further develop our brokering and distribution of capital markets issuances, both government and corporate,” Mr. Dumlao explained. “This new strategy will enable us to serve our clients better and contribute more effectively in the further development of the capital markets in the country.

In line with this transformation initiative, First Metro filed its application for the return of its Quasi Banking License with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

First Metro is among the leading investment banks in the country. Despite the pandemic, it remained among the most active in 2020, completing a total of 22 deals, both in the equity and debt capital markets.

More recently, First Metro was one of the Joint Lead Underwriters for the bond issuances of Ayala Land, Inc., SM Investments Corporation, Del Monte Philippines Inc., and Aboitiz Equity Ventures. The investment bank was also one of the Joint Issue Managers of the Bureau of the Treasury’s P516.3 billion Retail Treasury Bonds (RTB), the biggest RTB issuance of the national government so far.

First Metro has long been an advocate of capital markets development in the country. The company has developed innovative products such as the first exchange-traded fund (the First Metro Philippine Equity Exchange-Traded Fund) in the country; the first AMBIF (ASEAN +3 Multi-currency Bond Issuance Framework) in the Philippines; project notes involving non-bank institutions as investors; and the fixed rate notes with tenors of 18 and 24 months (for Toyota Financial Services and PSBank), to name a few.