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PLDT to sell 49% stake in data center for over $1b

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PLDT Inc. said Tuesday it will sell a 49-percent stake in its data center business to a foreign company for more than $1 billion.

“Well, we’re talking to the final bidder at this stage. We’ve agreed [on] the valuation with them. There are a few issues, and there are still a number of open points to be negotiated and agreed with them,” PLDT chairman and president Manuel Pangilinan told reporters at the sidelines of the company’s stockholders’ meeting.

“But hopefully in the next few weeks, we should be able to finalize and convert those discussions. So hopefully by July, we should have a binding term sheet with this particular investor,” he said.

Panglinan said the company would retain a controlling 51-percent ownership of Vitro Inc., a fully-owned subsidiary of ePLDT, the ICT holding company of the PLDT Group.

He did not disclose the identity of the prospective buyer.

Pangilinan said, however, the group was in talks with Japan’s Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT) and other prospective investors for the sale of its stake in the data center business.

He said the data center sale aimed to reduce PLDT’s debt, which amounted to P242.2 billion as of end-March 2024.

VITRO operates 10 facilities with a combined capacity of 50 megawatts and is building its 11th data center in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.

The activation of its data center in Sta. Rosa will increase its capacity to 99.5 MW.

PLDT earlier reported a net income of P9.8 billion in the first quarter of 2024, up 9 percent from P9.04 billion in the same period last year.

Telco core income, excluding the impact of asset sales and Maya Innovations Holdings, reached P9.3 billion, up 8 percent from the same period last year.

Consolidated service revenues grew 3 percent to P48.7 billion in the first quarter of 2024.

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