NOW Corp.
...iba talaga ang may hyper Tongue

Now Corp. approves follow-on offering

NOW Corp. has finalized the terms of its P1-billion follow-on offering (FOO), it disclosed to the stock exchange on Thursday.

The listed firm said its board of directors has approved the FOO with a base size of P500 million and oversubscription option of up to P500 million. The issuance comprises the sale of a total of 10 million preferred shares priced at P100 apiece.

Now Corp. tapped Unicapital, Inc. to be the offering’s issue manager, lead underwriter, and bookrunner.

The company will allow holders of the preferred shares to convert the security into common shares between its third and fourth anniversary, with the conversion price of P20 each.

Other than the preferred shares, the company will also be offering detachable subscription warrants, with a total of 20 million underlying common shares to be issued free of charge.

There will be a total of 10 million warrants, and an addition of up to 10 million for the oversubscription option. These will have a strike price of P10 during the exercise of the offer.

At the same time, the company’s board also approved a P50-million short-term loan with the LandBank of the Philippines. The final terms of the loan will be determined by the company’s executive committee.

Incorporated in 1996, Now Corp. has operations in the telecommunications, media, and technology sectors. The company works on a build-operate-transfer model, where it provides enterprise clients with their own private communications network independent of public telcos, equipped with broadband connectivity, a cyber security plan, and a collaboration software system.

Now Corp. returned to profitability in the first nine months of 2017 with P84,762, against a net loss attributable to the parent of P25.3 million in the same period in 2016. Revenues, meanwhile, more than doubled to P101.6 million during this period.


NOW Telecom franchise gets 25-year extension

NOW Telecom Company, Inc.’s legislative franchise has been extended for another 25 years.

The NOW Corporation affiliate said in a disclosure to the stock exchange that on Feb. 22, President Rodrigo R. Duterte signed into law Republic Act No. 10972 which extends NOW Telecom’s franchise until 2043.

“With the said law, NOW Telecom, as a telecommunications company, now has the privileges similar to those granted to existing dominant players in the industry,” the disclosure read.

Republic Act (RA) No. 10972, which was first drafted in July last year, renews the old RA No. 7940 to allow the franchise to build, operate, and maintain mobile radio systems within and without the Philippines for 25 years.

The act will take effect 15 days after it is published either in the Official Gazette or any general circulation newspaper.

NOW Telecom Mel V. Velarde said in a Facebook post that this would mean that they have secured a “tri-mega franchise.”

Formerly known as Infocom Communications Network, Inc., NOW Telecom is one of the three telecommunication companies vying take the third slot as one of the major players in the industry. The Department of Information and Communications Technology had announced some of the requirements needed to qualify for the slot, such as having a net worth of at least P10 billion, no liabilities, and that the company should be 60% Filipino-owned.


Congrats sa mga nakasakay dito.
share ko lang din ito..
$NOW feels dangerous. Even the owner is hyping it.

Better safe than sorry. Good luck!
Trading stocks is never a sure thing. Please do your own homework before pressing the button.

The price of $NOW on Feb. 26, 2018 (as I posted above) was Php15.96

Trading stocks is never a sure thing. Please do your own homework before pressing the button.


SEC approves Now Corp.’s preferred shares offering

THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday gave the go-signal for Now Corp.’s proposal to issue up to P1 billion worth of preferred shares.

In an e-mail to reporters, the commission said it has approved en banc Now Corp.’s registration statement where it will offer five million preferred A shares at P100 apiece, with an oversubscription option of up to five million preferred A shares at P100 each.

The primary offer consists of five million redeemable, convertible, cumulative, non-participating, non-voting peso-denominated preferred shares. These can be converted into 25 million common shares at P20 each, with one preferred A share equivalent to five common shares.

Each preferred share also includes two detachable subscription warrants to be issued free of charge, for a total of 10 million detachable subscription warrants.

The same terms apply to the oversubscription option of up to five million preferred A shares.

The issuance is set to be offered from June 28 to July 4, with listing at the stock exchange targeted on July 12. The company has engaged Unicapital, Inc. as the issues manager, bookrunner, and underwriter.

The company will still need clearance from the Philippine Stock Exchange to proceed with the offer.

Now Corp., which is widely expected to make a bid to become the third telecommunications player in the country, looks to net P471.05 million from the primary offer, and up to P955.46 million including the oversubscription option.

Proceeds of the offer will be used to partially finance the company’s expansion of Fiber-in-the-Air, its fiber optic network, and for general corporate purposes.

The offer will result to an additional paid-in capital of up to P495 million and P990 million considering the primary offer and over-allotment option, respectively, which the company intends to use to wipe out its capital deficit. It noted that this is why it has been unable to declare and pay dividends.

“Once the company obtains the necessary approvals and implements the equity restructuring plan, the company can resume paying dividends from future cash flows as they no longer have to use the same to eliminate retained earnings debit balances. This will also allow the management the flexibility to invest the surplus cash back to grow the business,” the company said.

Incorporated in 1996, Now Corp.’s core business is in providing telecommunications, media, and information technology products and services under three business segments. These are software licenses and services, IT manpower and resource augmentation, and broadband and wireless cable TV services.

Recently, Now Corp. has expressed its interest to become the third telco player in the country, following the government’s announcement to bid out a franchise for a third telco company that will break the duopoly of PLDT, Inc. and Globe Telecom, Inc.

The company realized a 248% jump in net income to P3.53 million during the first quarter of 2018, lifted by gross revenues that went up 3% to P33.85 million for the period.



Now Corp. inks MoU with TransCo for use of fiber assets

NOW CORP. on Thursday announced it signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the National Transmission Corp. (TransCo) for the use of the latter’s fiber and microwave assets for the establishment of a nationwide fixed broadband network.

“The MoU enables the parties to collaborate on the potential use of TransCo’s existing fiber and microwave assets nationwide, of use and access in certain fiber-optic cores, vacant lots, tower spaces, and related facilities currently being operated on by NGCP (National Grid Corp. of the Philippines) and owned by TransCo, for the purpose of building a nationwide fixed broadband network,” the company said in a statement.

The MoU was signed by TransCo, Now Corp. and its affiliate Now Telecom Company.

“Now is determined to build an independent nationwide backbone to cover the entire country and we are seriously looking on the viability of collaborating with TransCo to achieve this end. We now have a government committed to exhaust all means to solve the digital divide,” Thomas G. Aquino, Now Corp. chairman, was quoted as saying.

Mel V. Velarde, Now Corp. president and CEO, said with its newly renewed 25-year franchise, the company “will co-lead in the unfolding of the full transformation of the digital Filipino.”

Now Corp. is one of the companies keen on becoming the “third” telecommunications player in the country. In February, it was granted an extension of its franchise as a telco, until 2043.

The company has been upgrading its systems to provide improved broadband services in Metro Manila, through a partnership with affiliate Now Telecom. It rolled out its pre-5G technologies to deliver broadband and wireless cable and TV connectivity to enterprises in 2016.

In March, Philippine Telegraph & Telephone Corp., which is also interested in becoming the third player, signed an MoU with TransCo for the use by the telco of the latter’s dark (unused) fiber.

Information and Communications Technology Secretary Eliseo M. Rio, Jr. has said PT&T and TransCo’s MoU for the use of its dark fiber is already a precedent which interested parties can follow. He has said that agreements can happen given that by far, privately held NGCP has not expressed any opposition to the agreement between PT&T and TransCo.

TransCo earlier opposed NGCP’s move to allow third parties to use government property without authority. This includes NGCP’s authorization of PLDT, Inc. and Globe Telecom, Inc. to access the power grid operator’s facilities.



NOW nets P5.82M in first half  

TECHNOLOGY firm NOW Corp. said net income in the first half soared 158 percent to P5.82 million from last year’s P2.26 million, boosted by its core businesses. In a disclosure on Tuesday, it said gross revenues climbed 29 percent to P87.38 million. It said its Fiber in the Air broadband business realized a 104.88 percent growth in revenues to P20.01 million, while the software licenses and technical services segment grew 34.97 percent to P51.07 million. NOW seeks to bid to become the country’s third major telco player.



..yan na nga ba ang sinasabi ko dito tsk tsk

Velarde firm sues NTC over 3rd telco bidding rules

NOW Telecom Company, Inc. is suing the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) over alleged insertions of new requirements in the terms of reference for the new major telecommunications player.

In a statement on Tuesday, the affiliate of listed Now Corp. said it filed the case against the NTC at the Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 42, questioning certain items in the terms of reference, such as the “(1) P700 million ‘participation security’; (2) P14 to P24 billion performance security; and (3) P10-million non-refundable appeal fee,” saying these are barriers to entry.

Under Sec. 11 of the terms of reference, the company should post a performance security in favor of the NTC. The performance security should be maintained at 10% of the remaining cumulative capital (capex) and operational expenditure (opex) commitments for the rest of the commitment period.

An earlier draft only required that the performance security be either 10% cash bond or 30% surety bond of the annual capex and opex.

In the final terms of reference, the participation security was also raised to P700 million from the original amount of P500 million.

Now Telecom said these changes, which it claimed were not discussed during the public hearings, violate existing laws and can be considered “onerous, confiscatory and potentially extortionary.”

“Now Telecom is suing NTC to protect its public shareholders and President Rodrigo Duterte from any suspicion that he is complicit to the money making schemes in the TOR for the third telco,” Now Corp. President and Chief Executive Officer Mel V. Velarde said in the statement.

Mr. Velarde said the company would prefer Mr. Duterte receive the bidding documents for the third telco auction on Nov. 7. He said it would be “best” if Mr. Duterte, not the NTC, choose the new major telco player.

Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) Acting Secretary Eliseo M. Rio, Jr. defended the higher participation security, saying it has been “set high to more or less guarantee and assure the government that the third telco will deliver its commitments.”

In a statement, Mr. Rio said the appeal fee was also deemed necessary to prevent further delays in the entry of the third telco.

“DICT and NTC take exception to Now Telecom’s allegation that this initiative is a money-making scheme. All the above-mentioned fees are consistent and even lower than government standards and the requirements of RA 9184. This is to attract possible participants while ensuring that the winner will be able to withstand intensive competition against the entrenched duopoly,” he said.

Mr. Rio said Now Telecom could have earlier raised the questions on the terms of reference, which were published late last month.

“The selection of a third telco is no small matter and to set the bar low for those who apparently cannot meet the standards is detrimental to the people who will directly benefit from a third telco that has not only the technical capacity, but more importantly the financial muscle to compete with the giants, Globe and Smart,” he said.

Prior filing a case versus the NTC, Now Telecom bought selection documents from the government agency on Monday, firming up its interest to participate in the bidding.

Aside from Now Telecom, other prospective bidders that acquired the bid documents are Dennis A. Uy’s Udenna Corp., Norway’s Telenor Group, a consortium formed by TierOne Communications International, Inc. and Luis “Chavit” C. Singson’s LCS Group of Companies, and a local company that refused to be named.

The DICT set the deadline for submission of bids on Nov. 7, and the awarding of the third telco before Christmas.

Mr. Rio previously said the DICT and NTC are committed to follow the timeline, in adherence to the request of Mr. Duterte.

The President said last month he will “take over” the selection of the third player if it isn’t named by November.




OUTLIER: Now Corp. (NOW)

NEWS of telecommunications firm Now Corp.’s purchase of bid documents for the third player selection, followed by its decision to sue the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) over the terms of reference sent its stock price moving last week.

Data from the Philippine Stock Exchange showed the Velarde-led firm trading P660.5-million worth of 119.9 million shares from Oct. 8-12, making it the tenth most actively traded stock last week.

On a week-on-week basis, its share price was down by 23.2% to P5.61 apiece last Friday from its closing price of P7.3 on Oct. 5. However, Now shares are still up by 96.8% year to date.

“Most of the activity came from when the news regarding the third telco bidding was released… More trading even came about when Now made headlines saying they were planning to sue the NTC for a supposed ‘money making scheme,’” said Regina Capital Development Corp. managing director Luis A. Limlingan.

“This news created a shift in sentiment, which added to the volatility of the stock,” he added.

Christopher Adrian T. San Pedro, certified securities representative at Unicapital Securities, Inc., concurred: “Investors sold on the news fearing that this move would delay the bidding process of the new major player, which is due on Nov. 7.”

In a statement last Tuesday, affiliate Now Telecom Company, Inc. said it filed the case against the NTC at the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 42, questioning certain items in the terms of reference for the new telco player such as the “(1) P700 million ‘participation security’; (2) P14 to P24 billion performance security; and (3) P10-million non-refundable appeal fee,” claiming these are barriers to entry and that the terms were changed without being disclosed during public hearings.

The company asked for a 20-day temporary restraining order (TRO), but was rejected by the RTC in an Oct. 12 order, saying that Now’s petition failed to meet the standards for issuing a TRO. Specifically, it failed to prove its “unmistakable right” to be protected by a TRO, the “urgent necessity for such relief, and the “serious damage” that will ensure if the order is not issued, adding that the performance security is “contingent” upon Now Telecom being declared the winning bidder.

Now Telecom had likewise sought a preliminary prohibitory injunction, which is scheduled for Oct. 23 and 24 this year.

Prior to filing a case versus the NTC, Now Telecom bought selection documents last Monday, firming up its interest to participate in the bidding.

The deadline for submission of bids is set to be on Nov. 7, and the awarding of the third telco before Christmas.

Regina Capital’s Mr. Limlingan gave Now’s support and resistance levels of P4.5 and P6, respectively.

For Unicapital’s Mr. San Pedro: “I expect the stock to maintain its volatility as it consolidates between a P4 support and P5.94 resistance in the short term.”

Now reported a P5.82 million net income in the first half of the year, 158% more than the P2.26 million in 2017’s comparable six months. The company likewise cited a 29% increase in its gross revenues to P87.38 million during the same period from P68.1 million.



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