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PLDT strikes upbeat note, pursues full recovery

/ 12:20 AM March 08, 2017

Telco giant PLDT Inc. is starting 2017 on an upbeat note, as it outlined yet more details of a recovery plan that includes outsourcing jobs to cut costs, after ending a year at one point described as “horrible” by its chair and CEO Manuel V. Pangilinan.

PLDT’s full-year 2016 results announced Tuesday, while mainly in line with internal targets, nevertheless revealed the impact of intense competition with rival Globe Telecom, and the steep price the company has paid for shifting late to internet services in an increasingly digital market.

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PLDT said Tuesday that core profit for 2016 hit P27.9 billion, down 21 percent, while its “recurring core income,”  a figure that removes the gain from the sale of part of its Manila Electric Co. stake last year, was down 26 percent to P20.2 billion.

Total service revenues hit P147.6 billion, down 3 percent.

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“We are finally glad that 2016 is over,” Pangilinan said, adding the company saw “green shoots of recovery” early this year.

PLDT plans to sell the remainder of its stake in Meralco to possible buyers in the first half of 2017, which will bring core earnings to around the same level as 2016.

As for recurring core income, a measure the company had seldom cited, the target was around P21.5 billion for 2017, up about 6 percent.

“I don’t think we will be completely out of the woods yet. I think there is still a lot of work that needs to be done,” Pangilinan said.

Among the strategies this year: spending P48 billion, mainly for network improvement, more targeted marketing for its mobile business, Smart Communications, which has lost millions of subscribers to competition and a focus on the next battleground, fixed-line broadband, an area where PLDT still enjoys dominance.

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TAGS: Business, economy, Manuel V. Pangilinan, News, PLDT
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