PLDT set to expand international services

said it plans to modernize its international services and set a revenue target of $50 million for its overseas unit this year.

“We want to pivot our business [overseas] which is largely legacy. Legacy means voice and text. It’s not easy journey but it is quite complicated because you will work with content providers.  You might have platforms and you must have passed country regulation,” PLDT Global Corp. chief executive Alex Caeg said.

The PLDT Group has embarked on a three-year digital pivot in the Philippines that aims to transform its networks into most data-capable infrastructure delivering digital services.

PLDT teamed up with NTT Communications of Japan to bring to 240,000 Filipinos residing in the East Asian nation an innovative service that bundles mobile internet with free calls and remittance services.

PLDT JP GK launched the new service called Smart World on April 15, 2016.

“Our new offering—Smart World—empowers the digital lifestyle of Filipinos in Japan through a mobile data SIM bundled with a pocket wifi in a monthly prepaid subscription,” Caeg said.

The prepaid subscription service allows subscribers to choose from four monthly base plans of 10GB + monthly freebies, 7GB + monthly freebies, 5GB + monthly freebies, or 3GB + monthly freebies. Prices start at  4,200 yen, excluding consumption tax.

“Japan is very mature digital market,” PLDT JP GK general manager John Palanca said.

PGC’s mobile virtual network operator business offers legacy traditional telecoms services in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the United States, Guam, Macau and Taiwan.

Palanca said PGC planned to launch Smart World service in these markets and other new markets.

Caeg said the company was targeting $50 million in revenues this year, up from last year’s over $40 million.

“If there’s improvement in our revenues, it would come from our digital and content offerings,” he said.

“ I think we have to do better than $50 million this year,” Caeg said.

PLDT, partly owned by Hong Kong’s First Pacific Co. Ltd. and Japan’s NTT group, earlier reported a net income of P6.22 billion in the January-March period, down by 34 percent  from P9.48 billion a year ago.

The company blamed the decline in net income to the higher product subsidies and financing costs, and increased impairment charges related to the investment in Rocket Internet.

Core profit, which excludes foreign exchange gains or losses and other non-recurring income, dropped 22 percent to P7.21 billion in the first quarter from P9.28 billion last year.

Consolidated revenues amounted to P42.78 billion in the first quarter, up from P42.55 billion in the same period last year.

Source: The Standard