Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. said Tuesday it will borrow up to P7 billion in the second half to refinance maturing dollar-denominated debt.
“In terms of our funding activity, I think we don’t have any financial requirement for the first half of the year. We are looking at second half for the additional financing. It would be in the order of about P5 billion to P7 billion,” PLDT chief finance officer Anabelle Chua told reporters.
Chua said PLDT would use the proceeds of the loan to refinance dollar-denominated debt maturing in early 2017.
PLDT Group’s gross debt reached $3.4 billion in 2015, with over 60 percent due after 2018. US dollar-denominated debt accounted for 42 percent of the group’s total debt portfolio.
PLDT, partly owned by Hong Kong’s First Pacific Co. Ltd. and Japan’s NTT group, earlier reported a net loss of P3.27 billion in the fourth quarter, dragging down the full-year profit in 2015 to P22.1 billion from P34.1 billion in 2014.
The company was now looking at a profit guidance of P28 billion in 2016, lower than PLDT’s usual annual income target of at least P35 billion. The company earned a record P42 billion in 2010.
Core profit, which excludes foreign exchange gains or losses and other non-recurring income, fell 6 percent in 2015 to P35.2 billion from P37.4 billion in 2014.
Consolidated revenues dropped 1 percent in 2015 to P162.93 billion from P164.94 billion in 2014.
PLDT’s total wireless service revenues amounted to P110.72 billion, down by 4 percent from P115.03 billion in 2014. Data and fixed-line business posted P48.50 billion and P58.81 billion in revenues, respectively.
The group said it expected the data business to drive future growth. “The goal of our consumer group is to be the preferred digital service provider. To achieve this, we need to establish data leadership by improving not only data usage but monetization as well,” PLDT executive vice president and head of consumer group Ariel Fermin said.
“Note that higher data usage by mobile subscribers drove the 26-percent [growth] in mobile Internet revenues. Data traffic grew four times more than revenues, providing us with much scope for monetization. We will also ramp up our converged offers, leveraging on the combined strengths of our business,” Fermin said.
The PLDT Group had 65 million cellular subscribers as of end-December. Smart had 24.1 million subscribers while value brand TNT ended with 28.1 million subscribers. Unit Sun Cellular had 12.8 million subscribers.
The group’s combined broadband subscriber base reached about 5.2 million at end-2015, over 3.9 million of whom used wireless broadband.
The company allocated P43 billion in capital expenditures this year, up from P43.2 billion last year.