PLDT H1 net income soars 33% to P16.5B

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TELECOM and digital services provider PLDT Inc. said Thursday its net income for the first half of 2017 soared 33 percent, driven by double-digit growth in revenues from its PLDT Home and Enterprise businesses.

The absence of impairment losses from its investment in German e-commerce company Rocket Internet, which had negatively impacted the company’s earnings last year, also contributed to the improved bottom line.

PLDT said net income rose to P16.5 billion in the first six months of this year from the P12.5 billion recorded in the same period in 2016.

Annabelle Chua, chief financial officer and senior vice president of PLDT Inc., said in a media briefing in Makati City that the company had booked impairment losses in the first and second quarter of 2016 at P1.6 billion and P3.8 billion, respectively, and P300 million in the first quarter this year, for its Rocket Internet investment.
But “we have no Rocket impairment in Q2” this year, she said.


Asked if PLDT was contemplating on selling Rocket Internet, PLDT Chairman Manuel Pangilinan said, “From the PLDT financial perspective, no, not this year. Because I think if the business proceeds reasonably well in relation
to the first half results to the second half, then there’s no need to dispose of an investment like Rocket Internet.”

Pangilinan also noted that Rocket’s share price closed at €18.825 at the end of June this year compared to its close of €16.03 at the end of March 2017.

Meanwhile, PLDT said consolidated core income in the first half of 2017 amounted to P17.4 billion, 2 percent lower than last year’s figure of P17.7 billion.

Consolidated service revenues amounted to P71.2 billion, 6 percent lower than the P75.8 billion booked in the same period last year.

Business units PLDT Home and Enterprise continued to set the pace for service revenues, posting double-digit growth rates in the first half of 2017.

Home revenues grew 12 percent to P15.8 billion, while Enterprise revenues increased 11 percent to P16.8 billion. Home and Enterprise combined accounted for 46 percent of consolidated service revenues, surpassing the contribution of Wireless Consumer business of Smart, TNT and Sun.

PLDT’s Wireless Consumer Business posted P29.6 billion in revenues, 16 percent lower than the first half of 2016. However, quarter on quarter, revenues in the second quarter of this year were up one percent from the previous quarter, from P14.7 billion to P14.9 billion–the first time in eight quarters that Wireless Consumer revenues registered an upturn, the company said.

For the first half of 2017, the company’s consolidated earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization reached P32 billion, or 4 percent higher than last year’s P30.8 billion.

“We have made steady progress in the first half of this year in stabilizing our overall business and positioning the group to return to a growth path, largely on the back of data and broadband services,” Pangilinan said.

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