PLDT secures 7.5% stake in iflix
Local telecommunication giant Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. has converted a $15-million investment in iflix, Southeast Asia’s leading Internet TV service provider, into a 7.5-percent equity.
The conversion of the convertible notes into equity is part of a new round of equity fundraising completed by iflix. Sky PLC, Europe’s leading entertainment company and the Indonesian company Emtek Group, through its subsidiary PT Surya Citra Media Tbk (SCMA), led this round of equity infusion into iflix.
In the aftermath of this new round of fundraising, PLDT had a 7.5-percent stake in a company which was valued at $450 million. Sky Plc invested $45 million alongside the additional investment of SCMA.
“This new round of funding validates our investment in iflix last year. It enables the company to further strengthen its leadership position and improve its Internet TV services to the benefit of subscribers, particularly those of PLDT and Smart,” Manuel V. Pangilinan, PLDT and Smart chair and chief executive officer, said in a statement.
PLDT subscribed to non-redeemable convertible notes of iflix in April 2015. Under the terms of the deal, this investment is automatically converted into ordinary shares when a new round of capital call is made.
The fresh funds raised by iflix will be used to accelerate its growth in Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines, as well as for its expansion into new markets. As of end-2015, the Internet TV service had more than a million subscribers, the majority of whom were in the Philippines.
In a statement, iflix co-founder and group CEO Mark Britt said: “In response to both the rapid growth and customer adoption in our existing markets and strong demand from new markets, we have decided to accelerate our expansion plans for the business sooner than expected. The investment will support our continuing commitment to providing our members with the best in entertainment.”
iflix offers consumers the largest library of top Hollywood, Asian regional, and local TV shows and movies available in Southeast Asia.
Each subscription allows users to access the service on up to five devices, including phones, laptops, tablets, and television sets, for viewing wherever, whenever. iflix subscribers can also download TV shows and movies from iflix’s extensive library for offline viewing. Doris Dumlao-Abadilla
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