PLDT picks Huawei to improve service delivery as it faces new competition

Philippines operator PLDT has signed a deal with Huawei to improve service delivery for its wireless operations, including the Smart, Sun and TNT brands.

PLDT, which competes with Globe in the telecoms duopoly in the Philippines, said the move is part of a “massive capital expenditure programme” that will cost more than $1 billion in 2018.

The programme will see “continuing overhaul of its fixed and wireless networks infrastructure and its information technology systems”, said PLDT.

The Huawei contract is small in relation to the whole $1 billion budget – just $28.5 million – but PLDT said it would “enable PLDT group’s wireless services under the brands PLDT, Smart, Sun and TNT to become much more agile, efficient and resilient in developing and delivering a growing array of digital services”, according to PLDT chairman and CEO Manuel Pangilinan.

As a result, PLDT, Smart, Sun and TNT will be able to offer more personalised offers and rewards for their customers, said the company. PLDT’s wireless services will also be able to offer bundled services more quickly and efficiently, it added.

PLDT and Globe both face imminent competition from a third operator in the Philippines market. In November 2017 the government named China Telecom as its preferred partner – to work with a local company – for a third licence. Two Philippines companies, PT&T and state-owned TransCo, are in contention for the 60% local share.

PLDT group chief business transformation officer Victorico Vargas said: “This is part of our broader effort to overhaul our IT systems so that we can leapfrog our ability to deliver best-in-class wireless services.”

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