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MANILA, Philippines – Manny Pangilinan’s bid to acquire the Lopezes’ broadband business inches closer to being realized, as the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) allowed PLDT to buy Sky Cable.
ABS-CBN, Sky Cable’s parent company, said they got the regulator’s nod last January 19, Friday.
Note, however, that while the PCC has allowed the sale, the deal is still subject to a number of closing conditions.
PLDT said last Wednesday, January 17, that “Once the approval of the PCC is obtained, the sellers will continue to work on the other closing conditions which include, among others, the termination or cessation of Sky’s pay TV and cable businesses, obtaining all other applicable government approvals and clearances, and obtaining all required consents and corporate actions.”
PLDT has Cignal TV, which is also in the business of providing paid television.
“Obtaining the closing conditions is necessary for the implementation of the Proposed Transaction,” the telco giant said.
Both parties earlier told regulators that PLDT will acquire 100% of Sky Cable’s total issued and outstanding capital stock consisting of 1.3 billion common shares for a total of P6.75 billion or P4.90 per share.
PLDT tried to acquire Sky Cable in 2020 and 2022, but these bids were rescinded due to antitrust concerns.
In 2022, Cignal TV attempted to buy 38.9% of Sky Cable for P2.86 billion. This was scrapped due to political pressure, alongside the canceled landmark deal that was supposed to consolidate the media resources of ABS-CBN and TV5.
PLDT earlier said that the acquisition will “narrow the digital divide” by expanding its broadband connectivity.
ABS-CBN previously said the sale was a “strategic decision” to maintain competitiveness, as well as settle and fund its retirement obligations to employees. It will also allow ABS-CBN to focus its resources on content creation.
Shares of ABS-CBN jumped 3.8% at the open, while PLDT traded flat. – Rappler.com