S&P raises PLDT ratings outlook to positive-A A +A
Sunday, January 13, 2013
MANILA -International credit ratings firm Standard & Poor’s (S&P) improved the ratings outlook of telecoms leader PLDT to positive from stable, following a similar action on the sovereign credit rating outlook of the country.
S&P also affirmed PLDT’s foreign currency and senior unsecured rating of BBB- and the Asean regional scale rating of axA- which are considered investment grade.
“The rating reflects the company’s strong position in the domestic market, diversified services, integrated network, and solid cash flow measures,” S&P said in a statement.
“This affirms that the company is in the right direction as it evolves into a multi-media services group that is fully prepared for the screen age,” said PLDT Chairman Manuel Pangilinan.
He added that the recent decision of the company to sell 80% of its shares in leading Filipino business process outsourcing firm SPi Global will further strengthen PLDT’s finances and improve its cash flow.
PLDT President and CEO Napoleon Nazareno said the completion of the two-year P67 billion network modernization program and further turbo-charging of the network make PLDT far ahead of competition in terms of service reliability, speed, and efficiency.
This enables PLDT to lower its capital expenditures to its normal level of about 17 percent to 18 percent of revenues.
PLDT has earlier earned the distinction of being the first Philippine corporate to be given investment grade credit ratings by all three major international credit watchers – S&P, Moody’s Investors Service, and Fitch Ratings.
After raising the sovereign ratings outlook, S&P said it “may raise the country’s debt rating next year depending on improvements in government revenue structure, a continued diminished reliance on foreign currency government debt financing, or a lower government debt burden.” (PR)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 14, 2013.