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TV5 not keen on reviving terminated ABS-CBN deal

GLENN CARSTENS PETERS-UNSPLASH

THE PLDT group on Wednesday said it is no longer keen on reviving its terminated partnership deal with ABS-CBN Corp.

The current discussion between ABS-CBN Corp. and TV5 Network, Inc. is focused on content, PLDT Inc. Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan told reporters on the sidelines of the PLDT Digicon 2022 Media Launch in Makati City.

“I think we have mutually terminated discussions with respect to investments, either investments in Sky (Sky Cable Corp.) and investments in ABS-CBN,” he said when asked if the group was still keen on a possible partnership.

“Before that particular transaction, which has already been terminated, we have already been in discussions with ABS-CBN about content being shown on TV5,” he noted. “That discussion continues to this day about content, but limited to entertainment alone.”

He said there are no investments involved in the discussion.

TV5 and ABS-CBN signed an agreement on Aug. 31 scrapping the partnership deal they signed on Aug. 10.

The termination of the partnership deal came after some lawmakers raised questions over its legality.

Under the deal, ABS-CBN was supposed to acquire 34.99% of TV5 for P2.16 billion. The former expected that its investment in TV5 would “open significant opportunities for revenue enhancement, cost efficiencies, and various synergies.”

Mr. Pangilinan also said on Wednesday that the group was looking to invest in a local startup that is involved in e-commerce.

For his part, PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc. President and Chief Executive Officer Alfredo S. Panlilio said the group wants bigger participation in the cloud sector.

“It’s critical to build a talent pool of experts so that we can help enterprises in their own digital transformation journeys,” he noted.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin

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