P70-B RTB sale surpasses goal 28-Mar-17, 11:55 PM | Joann Santiago, PNA

Shakey's Pizza delivers 40% net income growth in 2016 27-Mar-17, 4:06 PM |

WATCH | Aussie maker of solar jeep makes an offer to PH transport groups 28-Mar-17, 1:11 AM | Michelle Orosa-Ople, News5

Maynilad, NWRB honor 14 water champions on World Water Day 26-Mar-17, 6:11 PM |

COCKTALES | Xurpas billionaires take 60% pay cut as stock loses sizzle

Nico Jose Nolledo, chairman and chief executive of Xurpas. means BUSINESS

The three billionaire-owners of Xurpas are taking nearly 60-percent salary cuts this year amid a curious backdrop of a strong 2016 earnings finish and the stock losing favor from market punters.

According to a regulatory filing, chairman/chief executive Nico Jose Nolledo, chief technology officer Fernando Jude Garcia, president Raymond Gerard Racaza, and two other senior management officers expect this year to receive a combined compensation package of P12.38 million, P17 million down from their P29.39 million post-IPO package in 2015.

Nolledo, age 40, Garcia, 43, and Racaza, 39,  are the triumvirate who control Xurpas, each owning 22.39 percent of the mobile gaming company. The triumvirate's pie was worth at last Friday's close at nearly P3.47 billion each.

Xurpas did not explain why Nolledo and company were taking a hefty salary reduction, despite the company reporting a 19-percent growth in profit for the first months of 2016 and revenues more than doubling to P1.13 billion.

Once a darling of market speculators, Xurpas saw its share price drop from its meteoric year high of P20 to P8.34 last Friday. Trading value this year has likewise ebbed to as low as P4 million a day.

The good news is that the stock, unlike the retail companies that debuted within the last two years, is still above water, more than double its December 2014 listing price of P3.97.

It also declared cash dividend, a rarity among newly-listed tech companies, a year after it went public, with a modest P0.048 per share payout. 

And in an effort to prop up the market price, Xurpas said it has allocated P170 million, equivalent to more than 10 percent of the listing proceeds, to buying back the stock.

PNB president jumps 50% on pay ladder

The low-key president of the Philippine National Bank, Reynaldo Maclang, is on a financial roll.

Three years since assuming the presidency of the merged PNB-Allied Bank, Maclang has seen his financial package expand by more than half.

Maclang, along with executive vice presidents Cenon Audencial Jr., Honorio Cebrero III, Nelson Reyes and Bernardo Tocmo will see their combined paychecks this year to jump to P97 million from only P62.7 million in 2014.

The PNB senior management package has already overtaken that of the bigger Security Bank.

This year Security Bank president Alfonso Salcedo Jr. and four other senior executives expect to take home a combined P85 million, bonuses included, which is just about last year's PNB's package.

According to the Bangko Sentral, Security Bank was the fifth largest local bank in terms of assets as of the third quarter of 2016, with PNB coming in as sixth.

Money talks

• Career executive Jeffrey Lim is marking his first full year as president of SM Prime Holdings this year nosing out SMIC president Harley Sy, despite the latter's surname, in the pay department.

Lim and his senior executive team at SM Prime expect their combined paychecks this year to reach P130 million against Harley and his team's P123 million.

• Heineken is continuing with its aggressive marketing push in the country after merging with taipan Lucio Tan's Asia Brewery.

The Dutch brewing giant has imported a former country manager of Heineken in Cameroon, Ziad Moukarzel, to head marketing here and backstop Cyrille Jacques Marie Charzat, who himself was a former country manager for Australia before being re-assigned to Manila to become Heineken's first managing director in the Philippines.