MANILA, Philippines – The country’s 3rd largest media network will likely break even 4 years after the group led by businessman Manuel V. Pangilinan acquired it, officials of affiliate firm Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) said.
“We expect TV5 to finally break even in 2013,” PLDT president Napoleon Nazareno said at a press briefing on Tuesday, May 8.
Previously, the group said they aim to break even and be in the black by 2014.
The PLDT group, through unit MediaQuest Corp, acquired ABC Development Corp, the operator of TV5 in 2009. Mediaquest spent around P5 billion to acquire the stakes of the Cojuangco group and its Malaysian partners then. Around P12 billion was budgeted for capital expenditures and programming.
TV5 currently trails behind — but closing the gap against — industry leaders ABS-CBN Corp. and GMA Network Inc., which operates GMA-7
Pangilinan once said that his group and some owners of the triumvirate in GMA-7 — Duavit, Gozon and Jimenez families — are in “preliminary talks” to seal a potential deal.
On Tuesday, however, Pangilinan said he is “not in acquisition talks with GMA [Network].”
“From a practical perspective, do we need a 2nd television (company) to precisely achieve the [goal] of moving away from a traditional telco to a multimedia company? I mean the genre of GMA7 is similar to what TV5 is,” Pangilinan said.
Higher TV5 share
Nazareno said TV5 has a market share on free TV at 15% to 17% at end-2011, a far cry from its 2.3% to 2.7% share in 2007.
TV5 CEO and president Ray Espinosa stressed, “We are targeting a 30% market share for TV5 by around 2014 to 2015.”
The PLDT group is spending around P6.13 billion for the new headquarters of TV5 in Mandaluyong City.
PLDT officials said media is “key to their growth” as a company as it is their means to reach “12 million overseas filipino workers.”
PLDT is the country’s largest telecommunications firm that has been espousing convergence of technology and content as a business strategy. – Rappler.com, with reports from Katherine Visconti
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