Liberty Telecoms seeks early exit from rehab
Liberty Telecoms seeks early exit from rehab
As the telecom continues to book losses, Liberty Telecoms wants to terminate its rehabilitation program, originally set to end in 2016

MANILA, Philippines – Liberty Telecoms Holdings Incorporated – jointly owned by diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corporation (SMC) and Qatar Telecom – is seeking early termination of its rehabilitation proceedings pending before a lower court, after it trimmed down its losses to P210.16 million ($4.73 million) last quarter.

Liberty Telecoms president and chief executive officer Bienvenido Bañas informed the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) on Friday, May 15, that the company, together with subsidiaries wi-tribe Telecoms Incorporated and Skyphone Logistics Incorporated, is set to terminate the rehabilitation plan set to end in 2016.

“The Liberty Group will seek the early termination of the proceedings in view of the successful implementation of the Revised Rehabilitation Plan,” Bañas said, without divulging details.

The Liberty Group was placed under corporate rehabilitation and debt restructuring after it suspended its operations in April 2005 due to lack of capital required to operate.

The Makati City regional trial court approved the revised rehabilitation plan of the Liberty Group in December 2006.

Under the plan, the company’s original schedule of getting out of rehabilitation is December 2016.

Liberty Telecoms is still pursuing plans to launch various services in the telecommunication industry despite the dominance of major players led by Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) and Ayala-led Globe Telecom Incorporated.

Liberty Telecoms chairman and SMC president Ramon S. Ang earlier disclosed that the company intends to venture into the mobile business to provide voice calls, short messaging system (SMS) or text messaging, as well as mobile broadband by 2016.

Liberty Telecoms managed to trim its total comprehensive loss by 31.7% to P210.16 million ($4.73 million) in the first quarter of the year from P307.58 million ($6.93 million) in the same period last year.

Its revenues declined by 1.44% to P77.25 million ($1.74 million) in the first 3 months of the year from P80.27 million ($1.81 million) in the same period last year.

Likewise, the company managed to reduce its cost and expenses by 13.1% to P280.94 million ($6.33 million) from P323.4 million ($7.28 million) amid lower retail and utilities; taxes and licenses; professional fees; personnel costs; repairs and maintenance, commission expenses, among others.

The company’s deficit, however, stood at P10 billion ($225.22 million) as of end-March this year but its major shareholders remained fully committed to support the operations of the Liberty Group. –

$1 = P44.40

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