PLDT Inc. said it plans to borrow P16 billion from local banks to refinance maturing debt.
“We have P16 billion of maturities this year. That’s what we are refinancing. So we are looking at more peso borrowings and there’s lots of offers that we are getting from banks,” PLDT chief financial officer Anabelle Chua said.
PLDT’s gross debt hit $3.5 billion as of end-2017, of which only 8 percent was unhedged. About 92 percent of PLDT’s debt are fixed-rate loans.
PLDT earlier reported a 33-percent drop in net income to P13.4 billion in 2017 from P20.16 billion in 2016.
The country’s largest telecom company said in the fourth quarter alone, it incurred a net loss of P8.51 billion, up by 11 percent from a P4.14-billion loss a year ago.
Total revenues also fell 3 percent last year to P159.93 billion from P165.26 billion in 2016. Revenues in the fourth quarter reached P40.86 billion, slightly up from P39.88 billion in the same period in 2016.
PLDT’s Home and enterprise business groups reported revenues of P33 billion and P34.1 billion, respectively, up 13 percent and 11 percent from the previous year.
Revenues of the wireless consumer group retreated 11 percent to P58.9 billion.
PDT budgeted P58 billion in capital expenditures this year, with 53 percent earmarked for the fixed network business.
It said the revised allocation reflected the more aggressive roll-out of fiber broadband service, which would support the stepped-up deployment of the mobile network.
PLDT said capex for 2019-2020 was expected to remain at the same level as 2018.
The company set a P40-billion capex program in 2018, representing 26 percent of consolidated service revenues.
The capex for 2018 will be funded by a combination of internally generated funds and proceeds from the sale of receivables from the sale of its Beacon stake in Metro Pacific Investments Corp., the company said. Darwin G. Amojelar