APART from plans to expand in Southeast Asia, mobile content provider Xurpas Inc. is solidifying its foothold in the Philippines through a partnership with Ayala-led telecommunications giant Globe Telecom Inc.
In a joint press statement, Xurpas and Globe said it signed an agreement on Wednesday for Xurpas to buy a 51-percent stake in the Globe unit Yondu for P900 million.
A wholly owned subsidiary of Globe, Yondu is a content developer and provider of mobile value-added services and information technology services. The deal would let Xurpas own 51 percent and Globe holding 49 percent of Yondu.
Under the deal, Yondu will be one of Xurpas’ regional arm for digital content distribution and other technology-driven services.
“Globe is very excited to be partnering with Xurpas in taking Yondu to the next level. Over the past few years, we have built the company into a great platform for media and content innovation, and it is time to bring our aspirations regional,” Globe President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ernest Cu said.
“In keeping with our partnership model, we have chosen to work with Xurpas to make this happen. Their track record in building businesses centered on consumer content will round out the technical and innovative capabilities of Yondu,” he added.
This is Xurpas’ seventh acquisition since listing on the stock exchange in November 2014, and has so far spent P1.246 billion in transactions, including the Yondu venture.
The acquisitions so far are: a 70-percent stake in Seer Technologies Inc. for P18 million; a 4.5-percent stake in California-based search engine specialist Quick.ly Inc. for nearly $1 million (P44.45 million); a 31.52-percent stake in Singaporean game developer MatchMe Pte. Ltd. for $1.4 million (P61.6 million); a 49-percent stake in Indonesian IT firm PT Sembilan Digital Investama for $245,000 (P10.9 million); a 51-percent controlling stake in employee benefits management firm Storm Flex Systems Inc. for $4.3 million; and a 21.7-percent interest in Singaporean IT firm Altitude Games PTE Ltd. for $741,000.
“Globe Telecom has been our strongest partner in the Philippines and the investment into Yondu stengthens our joint capabilities to bring world class digital products to the global audience,” said Nix Nolledo, Xurpas president and CEO.
The firm is on track with its P379-million net income guidance set by SB Equities Inc. for Xurpas this year on the back of its aggressive Southeast Asia expansion. SB Equities is a subsidiary of Security Bank Corp., which also holds SB Capital Investment Corp. that served as the underwriter for the Xurpas’ IPO.
Xurpas specializes in creating and developing digital products and services for mobile end-users, as well as the creation, development and management of proprietary platforms for mobile operators. It has two business segments – gaming and enterprise – which are focused on telecommunications solutions.