PLDT offers spectrum to push Digitel deal

Melissa Chua
telecomasia.net
PLDT will likely divest spectrum held by a subsidiary as an olive branch to regulators concerned about the corporation’s planned takeover of DigiTel.
 
According to BusinessWorld, PLDT is currently in talks with regulator NTC regarding spectrum divestment. Sources told the Manila Times that PLDT would likely give up 10Mhz of 3G spectrum currently held by Connectivity Unlimited Resource Enterprises (CURE), a wholly-owned subsidiary of PLDT-owned SMART Communications, the country’s largest mobile carrier.
 
PLDT is hoping the offer to divest spectrum will convince the NTC to finally sign off on the merger.
 
PLDT’s planned acquisition of number three player DigiTel has been subject to obstacles since the deal’s announcement in March. The deal had met with regulatory disapproval and protests from rival Globe Telecom, which insisted the deal would lead to market monopoly.
 
Globe has been pushing for PLDT to surrender some of it spectrum to rival players should the deal go through, to encourage fairer market conditions.
 
PLDT and DigiTel currently hold 45Mhz out of the 55Mhz of active spectrum in the country.

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