October 2020

ACCRALAW Acts as Counsel for the Underwriters for the Converge IPO

ACCRALAW acted as Philippine counsel to the underwriters for the initial public offering (IPO) of Converge Information and Communications Technology Solutions, Inc. (Converge). The Converge IPO is the largest IPO in the Philippines since 2016 raising Php 25.3 Billion. Converge is the largest high-speed fixed broadband operator in the Philippines and the only pure-play high-speed fixed broadband provider, with an exclusive focus on serving the Philippine fixed broadband market.

The Sanctity of Our Home Offices

Often quoted in cases involving searches and seizures is the principle that “a man’s home is his castle.” This principle finds its roots in the Constitutional right of all citizens to be secure in their homes and to privacy.

At the start of the second quarter of this year, however, many Filipino households have been forced by circumstance to set up “home offices” as a measure against the COVID-19 pandemic. The shift towards this new normal however may have blurred the lines between home and “business premises.”

Grace Period on Loans as a Form of Bayanihan

Currently, around 90,000 businesses*, including 6% of micro, small and medium enterprises**, remain closed due to the more than six-month community quarantine imposed in the National Capital Region and several provinces to prevent the ongoing spread of COVID-19.*** Meanwhile, poverty incidence rate is expected to increase next year, at a range of 15.5% to 17.5%, due to the continuing national emergency.****

Deal-making During a Pandemic

ACCRALAW Partner Andre B. Navato was one of the resource speakers at the webinar entitled, “Deal-making in a Pandemic: An Update from Asia” held last 22 October 2020. Mr. Navato shared his insights on how to navigate around the challenges brought about by the pandemic in deal-making. He also talked about his views on the current state of investment opportunities in the Philippines.

ACCRALAW as Joint Lead Managers and Bookrunners’ Philippine Counsel for UnionBank’s US$300 Million Dollar-Denominated Note Issuance

ACCRALAW acted as Philippine counsel to the joint lead managers and bookrunners (“JLMs”), Standard Chartered Bank, Citigroup Global Markets Limited and MUFG Securities Asia Limited in connection with the issuance by UnionBank of the Philippines of US$300 million senior unsecured notes (Notes) under its US$2 Billion Medium Term Notes Program. The Notes, rated Baa2 (Stable) by Moody’s, were issued at an aggregate principal amount of US$300 million and carries a fixed coupon rate of 2.125% p.a. payable semi-annually. It was listed on the Singapore Exchange Securities Trading Limited in October 2020.

The New Normal in Basic Education

As the country continues to confront different issues brought about by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Department of Education (DepEd) is addressing the challenges in the basic education for the school year 2020-2021 through its Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan (BE-LCP) under DepEd Order No. 012, s. 2020.

Patent Master Class

ACCRALAW Partner Jose Eduardo T. Genilo delivered a lecture on Patent Drafting for the Department of Science and Technology (DOST)-Philippine Council for Agriculture and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARD) Patent Master Class last 10 to 14 August 2020. He discussed how to draft patent specification and claims. He also talked about how patent claims relate to patent law and highlighted the importance of good patent claims.

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