PLDT chief finance officer Anabelle Chua said the company is unlikely to dispose of its remaining stake in Rocket Internet within the remainder of the year, but may look at doing so next year instead.
PLDT eyes sale of remaining stake in Rocket Internet
Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - November 9, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — PLDT Inc. is looking at next year to monetize its remaining stake in Berlin-based Rocket Internet currently valued at about P2.5 billion.

PLDT chief finance officer Anabelle Chua said the company is unlikely to dispose of its remaining stake in Rocket Internet within the remainder of the year, but may look at doing so next year instead.

“In terms of our Rocket Internet position, we’re down to 1.9 million Rocket shares. That’s traded in the market, so we’re free to dispose of that anytime there is a good opportunity out there,” she said.

“So not likely this year, but sometime next year. We will again seize an opportunity to monetize that. That’s roughly equivalent to about P2.5 billion in market value,” Chua said.

Rocket Internet is a Berlin-based company that builds online startups and owns shareholdings in various internet retail businesses.

The internet company focuses predominantly on sectors such as food and groceries, fashion, general merchandise, and home and living.

PLDT, which invested 333 million euros in Rocket Internet in 2014, sold a portion of its 6.1 percent stake in Rocket Internet last year for P10.5 billion.

The amount raised was used to fund the company’s record capex budget of P58 billion in 2018.

The transaction resulted in PLDT’s stake being reduced to two percent.

“I think taken from a purely financial perspective, it was a misstep. A small misstep, but a giant step towards realizing ourself investing in digital. On the whole, it turned out to be not so bad. In a way, we have to be patient on these things,” PLDT president and chief executive officer Manuel V. Pangilinan said referring to the company’s investment in Rocket Internet.

Pangilinan earlier said there is no pressure on the part of PLDT to dispose of the remaining stake in Rocket Internet.

Last year, he said the company might dispose again some more shares this year, depending on market conditions.

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