Ayala chief executive takes medical leave

Ayala Corp. President and CEO Fernando Zobel de Ayala will relinquish his duties to some senior members of the conglomerate as he will be on a medical leave starting August 15.

In a disclosure, the company said it convened a special board meeting on Sunday to discuss Zobel’s medical leave. Former banker Cezar P. Consing will serve as the conglomerate’s acting president and CEO.

Zobel, who is also the company’s vice chairman, will still remain as a member of the board but has stepped down as a member of the executive and finance committees.

Delfin L. Lazaro was also appointed as vice chairman of the executive committee.

Both Consing and Lazaro’s appointments were endorsed by Ayala’s corporate governance and nomination committee, the company said in its disclosure.

“I want to assure everyone that Fernando is in high spirits, but he has asked for some time to focus on his health and recovery. We all have so many responsibilities and commitments in all aspects of our lives, but first and foremost, we should all prioritize our health and well-being,” Ayala Chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, who is Fernando’s brother, said in his Facebook post.

“As a family, we’re fully supportive of Fernando’s decision to take a leave so he can do whatever is necessary to rebuild his strength,” he said.  “Let us all give Fernando the support he needs to focus on improving his health, and Bong (Consing) and Del (Lazaro) our confidence as they take on their new roles.”

Both Consing and Lazaro are members of the company’s board of directors, and also the other units of the Ayala