CONVERGE ICT Solutions, Inc. is investing $1.8 billion for its broadband network expansion in the next five years, partnering with US, South Korean and Philippine companies for its nationwide rollout.
The fiber internet provider on Wednesday signed a contract with South Korea’s KT Corp., US-based Tyco Electronics Subsea Communications LLC (TE SubCom) and local firm Fibernet Konstrukt Corp. for its fiber optic cable (FOC) construction project.
“The total investment in five years is $1.8 billion. Financing is by equity and by bank,” Converge ICT Chief Executive Officer Dennis Anthony H. Uy told reporters on Wednesday.
Mr. Uy said the company sought the expertise of these three companies to build and deploy infrastructure for its network.
“Because they are number 1 technology in the world,… so we bring them here in the Philippines to assist us in the rollout and (to) construct faster… In terms of the best practices, in terms of best experience, you need that from other countries,” he said.
Miles Tonn Chua, chief operating officer of Converge ICT unit MetroWorks ICT Construction, Inc., was quoted as saying in a statement that the network rollout has the potential to reach more than 13 million households, especially in Visayas and Mindanao.
Mr. Chua noted the entire network backbone is targeted to be completed by 2021, but may be operational in phases to allow Converge ICT to provide “pure end-to-end fiber” internet connectivity throughout the country.
Mr. Uy said the company is targeting to reach seven-million subscribers in five years.
Meanwhile, Converge ICT is not interested in joining the government’s bid for the ”third telco player” as it is focused on its fixed broadband business.
“We, Converge, (will) build the whole nationwide network to whoever wants to play in the mobile space. We allow them to use our backbone being built…. And we kickoff immediately to roll out to public faster,” Mr. Uy said. — D.A. Valdez