PLDT Inc. has released its financial results for the six months ended 30 June 2018, with net profit declining 29% year-on-year to PHP11.805 billion (USD222.6 million) from PHP16.561 billion in the year-ago period, despite revenue improving 4% to PHP82.239 billion. The Philippines’ largest telecoms operator by revenue said that its falling profit was the result of ‘a higher gain from asset sales’ in H1 2017, while the increase in turnover was ‘primarily due to higher revenues from data services’ in its fixed line business, as well as ‘higher non-service revenues from wireless and fixed line businesses, partially offset by lower revenues from mobile and home broadband services in [PLDT’s] wireless business’. In a disclosure to the stock exchange, the telecoms giant confirmed that 6M18 EBITDA stood at PHP33.185 billion, up 4% from PHP32.010 billion in 6M17; EBITDA margin was 43%, compared to 42% previously. PLDT’s earnings report arrived amid what Chairman and CEO Manuel Pangilinan termed ‘headwinds’, including the Department of Labor and Employment’s order to PLDT to ‘regularise’ 7,300 employees. ‘Despite these headwinds, the favourable factors for our continued recovery remain in place. Through creative and persistent efforts, we can make these factors work for us and enable us to attain our goals this year,’ he claimed.
PLDT’s mobile units Smart Communications and Digitel (Sun Cellular) closed out 30 June 2018 with a total of 58.510 million mobile subscribers, compared to 58.703 million a year ago, of which 56.081 are pre-paid users. Meanwhile, the group’s fixed line operations counted 2.038 million fixed broadband subscribers, up 11% from 1.833 million – broken down as 1.829 million fixed and 209,237 fixed-wireless broadband users – and more than 2.756 million fixed voice telephony accounts (up 8%).