Globe raising 2017 spending to $800m

Globe Telecom Inc. is raising 2017 capital expenditures by $50 million to $800 million to fund the expansion of data-related projects.

“I think we are tracking in the $575-million capex in the first six months of the year, so there’s a possibility of raising the capex number forecast for the rest of the year,” Globe president and chief executive Ernest Cu said.

Globe’s initial capex guidance for 2017 was $750 million, majority of which will be invested in data-related projects, including the deployment of LTE mobile and LTE @Home and increased network capacities and coverage of fixed-line data.

“Everything we do is towards data. That’s the growing part. As you know, SMS is declining and voice is declining,” Cu said.

The telecom company led by Ayala Corp. reported a consolidated net income of P8.1 billion in the first six months, down by 10 percent from P9 billion a year ago.

Globe’s consolidated service revenues increased 5 percent in six months to a record P62.9 billion from P59.9 billion it booked in the same period in 2016.

Globe commercially launched the $250-million Southeast Asia-United States submarine cable system on Aug. 11, providing direct link between Davao and the United States for richer and enhanced international connectivity for businesses in Mindanao and the rest of the country.

“First world connection is more than just fast internet but is also about building a better nation that transcends borders and opens infinite possibilities for everyone. We are excited about this development because of the immense benefits that the undersea cable system will bring to the Philippines,” Cu said.

“For one, it will provide support for the expanding business requirement for data in the Mindanao region where the cable landing station is located and in the country as a whole. This will also ease our dependence on international cable systems and ensure the resiliency of the country’s internet connectivity,” he said.

The SEA-US cable system is connected to the Globe cable landing station in Barangay Talomo, Davao City which also houses the Power Feed Equipment necessary to run the system. Outside of Luzon, the undersea cable is the first direct connection of Globe to the United States via Guam, Hawaii and California, offering faster transmission of data to the US.