LOPEZ Group chairman Oscar M. Lopez (OML)
told senior executives at the annual budget conference to brace for competition as the Group’s operating companies seek to maintain dominance in their chosen markets. While the Lopez Group remains the market leader in the power generation and media businesses, it will have to fight in order to maintain that leadership. Many powerful business groups are entering its markets, flush with cash and looking for large-scale investment opportunities.
“We cannot prevent these groups from deploying large amounts of capital in the pursuit of their own business aspirations. What we need to show them, however, is that you cannot wrest market leadership in any business simply by throwing large amounts of money at it,” Oscar M. Lopez said. “You have to do it the old-fashioned way, by managing your people for superior operating performance, by managing your financial resources and by managing your choice and use of technology.” Convergence
Going forward, Oscar M. Lopez sees convergence finally coming to fruition in the media side of the business, as consumers drive content creators and content distributors to seek synergies for optimum service provision. In the power sector, the potential for international expansion exists for such affiliates as Energy Development Corporation (EDC)
, an acknowledged global leader in the practical exploitation and management of geothermal fields; and First Philec Solar Corporation, provider of wafer slicing services to solar power system innovator SunPower of the US.
As for power distribution, Oscar M. Lopez stressed that the Group’s remaining minority share in Meralco remains a significant portion of the Lopez Group portfolio. Medium-term goals
“True, we may not have a controlling voice in Meralco, but we will continue to have an important voice, particularly in the context of our relationship with the Pangilinan group…we will continue to watch closely over a very valuable asset and we will continue to do whatever we can to protect and support it,” Oscar M. Lopez said.
The chairman added that should there be opportunities to take over small, inefficient utilities and create value by getting them to run at the proficiency level the Group achieved in Meralco, then such opportunities would be seriously considered. Finally, Oscar M. Lopez listed the following as his goals for the medium term: identifying the right investment opportunities in Iloilo, where the Lopez family got its start in business; moving Lopez Memorial Museum to a better home in Rockwell Center; and building a corporate house representative of the Group’s future and aspirations, something “that is proudly and uniquely Filipino, but with something to give to the world.”