Lopez looking for buyer for BayanTel

28 Nov 2006

The Lopez group of companies confirmed yesterday that it was looking for a buyer for its telecoms subsidiary, Bayan Telecommunications Inc (BayanTel). A spokesman for the firm said it had received an earlier approach from Globe Telecom, but declined to provide any details.

BayanTel launched wireline services in 1993, when then market was opened up to competition, but incurred huge losses because of its mostly dollar-denominated loans that prompted it to file for corporate rehabilitation in 2003. According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms database, it provides five main telecoms offerings: leased line carrier services, international gateway facilities, domestic and international leased line services, public trunk radio, and public calling office services. It owns 94% of the National Digital Transmission Network (NTDN), which provides the country’s only alternative backbone. BayanTel has been concentrating on data services over the last few years, and invested PHP1.4 billion (USD25.8 million) in 2005 in a bid to increase subscribers and enable it to roll out VoIP services to residential customers. It hopes to have signed up 300,000 ADSL subscribers by end-2006.