Listed firm keen on join­ing 3rd telco bid­ding

Business World - - CORPORATE NEWS - Valdez Denise A.

TRANSPA­CIFIC Broad­band Group In­ter­na­tional, Inc. (TBGI) is look­ing to sell up to 40% of its com­mon eq­uity to for­eign in­vestors, as it pre­pares to join the bid­ding for the third ma­jor telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions player.

In a dis­clo­sure to the stock ex­change on Thurs­day, TBGI said the board ap­proved the com­pany’s plan to raise funds equiv­a­lent to 40% of stock­hold­ers eq­uity to for­eign in­vestors.

“The Chair­man ( Arse­nio T. Ng) in­formed the board of the need to raise funds from a pri­vate place­ment up to 40% of com­mon eq­uity from for­eign sources to be able to par­tic­i­pate in var­i­ous op­por­tu­ni­ties in the telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion mar­ket brought about by di­rec­tive of the govern­ment to have a 3rd telco in the Philip­pines,” the com­pany said.

TBGI said it may par­tic­i­pate in the third telco player se­lec­tion as a mem­ber of a con­sor­tium of in­vestors, or as part of a “Com­mon Tower In­vest­ment Corp.” The Com­mon Tower In­vest­ment Corp. could set up around 50,000 cell tow­ers that can be leased to the third telco player.

A reg­is­tered Clark Spe­cial Eco­nomic Zone ( CSEZ) en­ter­prise, TGBI holds a 25year con­gres­sional tele­com fran­chise for com­mer­cial telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions oper­a­tions.

The com­pany said it was also given the green­light to es­tab­lish a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of­fice in China, “with co­or­di­na­tion and co­op­er­a­tion with a China con­sor­tium in­volved with tele­coms and tech­nol­ogy, the aim of which is to bring in Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence Ini­tia­tive, Block Chain Tech­nol­ogy, As­set- backed Ini­tial Coin Of­fer­ing, and In­ter­net of Things tech­nol­ogy.”

The Philip­pine govern­ment plans to have a third telco provider by the end of Septem­ber or early Oc­to­ber. For the past weeks, mem­bers of the over­sight com­mit­tee were con­flicted be­tween two ver­sions of the terms of ref­er­ence ( ToR) to be used for its se­lec­tion.

The ToR backed by the De­part­ment of In­for­ma­tion and Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions Tech­nol­ogy ( DICT) refers to a prospect’s high­est com­mit­ted level of ser­vice (HCLoS) as ba­sis for award­ing the fre­quency.

On the other hand, the De­part­ment of Fi­nance ( DoF) is push­ing for the ToR that al­lows the third telco slot to be auc­tioned off, let­ting the high­est bid­der win.

Last week, a pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion with in­dus­try stake­hold­ers showed their pref­er­ence for the HCLoS ToR. —

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