JG SUMMIT Holdings, Inc. has acquired a bigger stake in PLDT, Inc. to give it at least a 10th of the shares in the telecommunications services provider, the Gokongwei-led firm told the stock exchange on Tuesday.

“As a result of such acquisition, the shareholdings of JGS (the holding firm’s stock symbol) in PLDT, Inc. will be 11.23%,” it said.

The holding firm placed the total price of the acquired shares at around $138.83 million, which it paid in full. The common shares, amounting to 7,046,979, were priced at $19.70 apiece or about P1,003 each through the purchase and conversion of 7,046,979 American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) of PLDT.

The company considers the shares as a “valuable investment” given the service provider’s good history of paying dividends. The shares account for 3.26% of the total outstanding shares of PLDT. The deal took place on Jan. 6, 2020.

“The acquisition of the common shares of PLDT will not have any adverse effect on the financial condition of JG Summit,” it noted.

PLDT is one of the country’s telecommunications service provider through its three business categories, namely: wireless services through the brands Smart, TNT, and Sun Cellular; fixed line named under PLDT Home; and PLDT Enterprise, and others.

PLDT previously said that it would increase its capital expenditure for 2020 from P78.4 billion this year as it continues to expand its network infrastructure through fifth-generation (5G) network, which will be launched early this year.

A big portion of the capex will be used by the company to fund the continuous rollout of its 5G technology.

In the first nine months of 2019, the company reported a 2% decline in its attributable net income to P6 billion due to higher expenses and lower gains from Rocket Internet sales. For the third quarter, attributable net income fell 16% to P3.79 billion due to lower earnings from its fixed-line and other businesses.

JG Summit reported 50% increase in its attributable net income as of September 2019 to P22.23 billion due to double-digit growth in its airline business Cebu Air, Inc. and real estate arm Robinsons Land Corp. backed by foreign exchange translation gains and higher equity in net earnings of associates, specifically from United Industrial Corp. Ltd.

However, a 2.4% drop was reported in its attributable net income in the third quarter last year to P4.8 billion due to lower revenues from its petrochemicals business and higher expenses.

Shares in JG summit fell a centavo or 0.12% to close at P81.80 apiece at the stock exchange on Tuesday.

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. — Vincent Mariel Galang