PLDT sells voting preferreds to comply with SC ruling

Posted at 10/16/12 3:14 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT) has sold P150 million of voting preferred shares to local investors to avoid breaching foreign ownership laws.

PLDT made the move last Friday, 3 days after the Supreme Court junked its appeal of a 2011 decision that said non-voting shares should be excluded when counting ownership. 

Based on that definition, PLDT says foreigners own 58.4% of the company, exceeding the constitutional limit of 40%. 

In its disclosure today, PLDT says the sale of voting preferreds should reduce foreign ownership to 34.5%. 

PLDT also says it made the move to avoid sanctions including the revocation of its franchise. 

The Securities and Exchange Commission tells ANC it still would continue with its investigation into PLDT's ownership as ordered by the high court. 

"The Commission will have to look into the details of the set-up first and determine if the same is compliant with the directives of the SC," said SEC spokesman Gerard Lukban. - ANC