Pampanga’s Dennis Uy eyes slice of local digital services market
Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - December 10, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Pampanga-based businessman Dennis Anthony Uy of Converge IPCT Solution Inc. may have failed to become part of the third telecommunications player slot, but that does not stop him from engaging on another potential showdown with incumbents PLDT and Globe for a slice of the internet services market.

Uy told The STAR over the weekend that he seeks to join the digital services market with his group’s entry into listed shell company Vulcan Industrial & Mining Corp., which is controlled by the Ramos family of National Book Store.

“Once Zap Cove (Development Corp.) gets the stake, this company (Vulcan) will engage more in digital transformations, like fintech,” Uy said, adding that “You really have no choice because digital transformation is the future. It will somehow be a telco company, but more on digital transformation.”

Vulcan said its stockholders approved last Friday the subscription by and issuance of to up to 2.55 billion new common shares out of the authorized, but unsubscribed capital stock to Zap Cove, a company controlled by Uy.

The authority to engage in all other activities necessary or incidental to the new primary purpose of holding, as well as any of the existing secondary purposes of the corporation, and its cessation to engage in the business of mining, oil, petroleum, industrial development, mineral processing and other related activities have likewise been approved.

Uy said Zap Cove is expected to have over 70 percent ownership in Vulcan once the acquisition is completed within the first quarter of next year.

“We want to clean up everything first before we get that,” he said.

Joining the digital technology picture will pit Uy once more against PLDT and Globe, which have their respective established mobile money services in the country through PayMaya and GCash.

PayMaya, the digital financial services arm of PLDT and Smart’s Voyager Innovations, is the first prepaid online payment app that enables the financially underserved to pay online without a credit card. GCash, meanwhile, is the mobile wallet service of Globe Telecom’s subsidiary Globe Fintech Innovations Inc. or Mynt.

Publicly-listed Philippine Telegraph and Telephone Corp. (PT&T) is also embarking on a company transformation into a digital services provider, announcing last week a partnership with Paynamics, a payment solutions provider that offers secure and efficient electronic payment solutions.

Uy, through his company Converge ICT, has been competing with PLDT and Globe as an internet service provider. The company announced last week a move to upgrade speeds of its existing internet subscribers for free.

Converge ICT was supposed to partner with Korea’s KT for a third telco bid to challenge the so-called duopoly, but later on opted not to join, noting that while the market and industry outlook was financially viable, “the conditions imposed for participation render the venture commercially unviable.”

Uy earlier told The STAR that Converge is open to the Mislatel consortium’s invitation to partner with them, depending on the proposal to be made by the new major player.

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