Globe tops network modernization targets in Q1, hikes capex

Published April 21, 2021, 6:00 AM

by Emmie V. Abadilla

Despite the continuing pandemic, Globe Telecom Inc. exceeded its network builds and modernization targets in the first quarter of the year, the telco disclosed Tuesday, ( April 20) in Annual Stockholders’ Meeting.

The telco built 318 new cell sites, a 152 increase from 126 built in the same period last year.

Globe also installed over 287,000 high-speed lines, 212 percent more versus the same period in 2020, benefitting 844 areas.

Its wireless expansion, which includes 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) and 5G builds also reached 7,065 sites in the first quarter this year, up by 245 percent.

Globe is allotting P70 billion to upgrade, improve and expand its network for 2021, rolling out fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) and widening its 5G footprint.

The telco remains gung-ho on its 2021 capex, allocating P10 billion more than last year, despite 2020’s losses, single digit 2021 revenue growth prospects – “more of the same tail end of 2020”, with the economic scenario not improving till 2022.

President and Chief Executive Officer Ernest L. Cu

“Globe is resolutely marching forward, staying attuned to the new customer and reinventing their experience to make us more relevant,” remarked President and CEO Ernest L. Cu.

The pandemic pulled down the telco’s revenues across all its businesses, except for Home broadband, which sustained double digit growth as locked down Filipinos worked, studied, shopped and entertained themselves at home.

Last year was indeed a “challenging” one. Consolidated service revenues dipped 2 per cent to ₱146.4 billion with net earnings of P18.6 billion, down 16 per cent due to the drop in EBITDA, higher depreciation charges and non-operating expenses.

Excluding the impact of extra ordinary items booked for the year, normalized net income would have been ₱20.4 billion, or 8 per cent lower. Core net income declined 13 per cent to P19.5 billion.

Still, Globe’s balance sheet remained strong and it “pulled through despite the pandemic and adverse economic environment”.

In ASM, the telco also announced Issa Guevarra-Cabreira is assuming the post of Chief Commercial Officer, the first woman CCO in its history in today’s ASM.

She succeeds Albert de Larrazabal, who was nominated as Ayala Corporation’s new Chief Finance Officer.