No Go; Digitel boss dismisses takeover rumours

3 Jun 2009

James Go, the president of Filipino telecoms group Digital Telecommunications Philippines Inc (Digitel) owned by JG Summit Holdings, has denied his company is once again the subject of a takeover bid – scotching persistent rumours that continue to dog the operator. In an interview Go said there was ‘no need’ to give credence to such a notion. ‘No, we are not [selling Digitel] because we are doing very well. We have the road map to grow and we are a very credible and strong number three player. So, I think those positions will not even change. We are doing very well and there is no need to,’ he said.

In recent years Digitel has been the subject of a number of takeover rumours, most notably involving the government of Singapore Investment Corp and Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing’s Hutchison Whampoa. These have all been denied by the company, and while Go confirms Digitel is amenable to building strategic alliances, it is not engaged in any talks at the moment. In 2009 the company has set itself the dual goals of becoming a serious player in the broadband market and on developing its mobile arm Digitel Mobile (Sun Cellular). Digitel has set aside USD350 million to fund Sun Cellular’s network upgrade, of which around USD200 million will be raised via borrowings from export credit agencies and the remainder from internal resources.