Shares of NOW Corp. soared more than 20% in early trade this morning after the company secured an extension of its authority to install, operate and maintain a telecommunications network.
NOW opened at P3.60 and surged to as much as P4.06 or an increase of 22.9% from Friday’s close of P3.10 per share.
The authority granted to NOW also includes the upgrade of its existing system to a nationwide wireless communications network which will provide mobile telephony communications and multimedia transmission capability to all cities and municipalities nationwide.
NOW president Rodolfo Pantoja lauded the government’s approval, saying it reflects the Duterte administration’s efforts to promote competition by further liberalising the telco industry.
“We have been providing guaranteed broadband to enterprises including the government sector. We reiterate our belief that at present, there is an insufficiency in telecommunications facilities that can effectively address the needs for day-to-day real time operations and at the same time provide disaster mitigation during time of emergencies.” Pantoja said.
Pantoja said the network upgrade would provide an affordable and reliable option for day-to-day wireless communications (PTT, mobile, telephony, text and data) needs.
Velarde-led NOW earlier signed a memorandum of understanding with Singapore’s Hyalroute Group and Philippine Fiber Optic Cable Network Inc. to step up its national rollout of its telco operations across the country, a move that bring the company closer to its goal of offering 5G wireless broadband.
Investors are also cheering the possible partnership between NOW and third telco player DITO Telecommunity Corp. of businessman Dennis Uy.
NOW officials earlier expressed their willingness to collaborate with DITO to provide better telecom services.