Think of any business deal over the last two years and the name Dennis Uy, the budding tycoon from Davao and friend of President Duterte, almost always crops up. An experienced hand in logistics and fuel trading via his flagship Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Uy has embarked on a dizzying string of acquisitions ever since Mr. Duterte came into power. Last week, he moved closer to winning his largest deal yet: the opportunity to become a telecommunications mogul competing with the likes of the Zobels of Globe Telecom and Manuel V. Pangilinan of SmartPLDT. Uy, through his flagship firm Udenna Corp. and its subsidiaries, partnered with stateowned China Telecom. The alliance, known as Mislatel Consortium, emerged as the provisional third telco after two rivals were disqualified. Mislatel offered to spend almost P260 billion over five years to roll out a mobile telecom network and offer fast internet to subscribers. Critics, however, worry that Uy’s China connection could pose a security risk given the country’s territorial tiff with this neighbor.