PLDT To Sell 6k Towers As Telco Moves To Adopt Government’s “Common Tower Policy”

PLDT is selling its 6,000 towers as the telco moves to adopt the government’s “common tower policy”.

PLDT — The telco giant is selling its 6,000 towers as the telco moves to adopt the government’s “common tower policy”.

Photo source: GMA News Online

PLDT chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said at a press briefing last Thursday that the telco is selling its 6,000 tower assets — nearly half of its roughly 11,000 to 12,000 towers — amounting to “north of PHP 50 billion.”

Pangilinan announced last August 2021 that the telco was considering selling its tower assets.

To recall, the government implemented a “common tower policy” in which telecommunications companies will only have to lease towers instead of building their own in order to reduce the cost of maintenance and in turn cut the cost of telco services.

READ ALSO: PLDT Reportedly Working With JPMorgan On Potential Sale Of Data Centers

PLDT president Alfredo Panlilio revealed during the briefing that the telco received initial bids from 19 bidders which were later reduced to 6. According to him, the bidders are “common tower players globally” and are “strong well-funded entities”.

The PLDT chief also said that the telco would award 2 contract packages of about 3,000 towers each to 2 winning bidders.

PLDT chief financial officer Anabelle Chua, for her part, said that the telco was expecting to award the towers to the winning bidders “some time in the second quarter”.

The telco will then enter with the winning tower companies into a transition period after the award, wherein PLDT will gradually transfer the tower assets and expect to complete it “within the year”.

According to Chua, the telco would only sell its physical tower structures and passive equipment to the bidders and not its main radio equipment.

Photo source: CNN Philippines

Following the disposal of the tower assets, Chua said that the telco would rent towers on a monthly basis. She added that proceeds from the sale of the tower assets would “be used to pay up our debt”.

Also, PLDT reported a core telco net income of PHP 30.2 billion in 2021, 8 percent higher than its PHP 30-billion target.

For this year, PLDT is allocating PHP 76 billion to PHP 80 billion in capital expenditures, lower than the PHP 89 billion spent last year as the telco aims to achieve a positive cash flow.

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