Globe is looking at building new businesses for additional revenue streams as the telecommunications industry continues to mature and face numerous challenges.
Globe President and CEO Ernest L. Cu said in a virtual interview with Media Partners Asia Executive Director Vivek Couto during the APOS media conference that it is important for the telco to explore other sources of income especially in light of the current situation.
The Covid-19 crisis has affected both global and local telecom revenues due to lack of international travel, lower handset upgrades caused by the closure of retail stores, challenges in corporate as well as small and medium enterprise (SME) markets, and spending pressures particularly among the prepaid segment.
“We are very fortunate that we continue to see revenue growth and are able to sustain growth over the past 10 years. But we also know that it's going to be difficult to keep it up in the future,” said Cu.
Cu added the company has to take the assets it built over the years to create new businesses that will cater to changing customer needs.
Globe succeeded with mobile wallet leader GCash which already exceeded its targets last year as transaction value hit over P1 trillion.
Since the pandemic served as a catalyst for digitalization, GCash grew its client base to over 33 million last year or 65 percent higher compared to the 20 million users in 2019 due to a shift in consumer behavior amid strict mobility and quarantine restrictions to slow the spread of the virus.
“Our recent success story is GCash. Today, it is the largest e-wallet in the Philippines and is another avenue of growth for the company,” Cu said.
GCash is one of the portfolio companies under 917Ventures, Globe’s fully-owned subsidiary and the largest corporate venture builder in the country. The telco prides itself in managing non-telco firms, such as the country’s most active corporate venture capital firm, Kickstart; IT solutions provider Yondu, and shared service company Asticom, to name a few.
Globe remains optimistic about the country’s recovery from the pandemic-induced recession. As vaccinations increase, consumers will feel safer and more confident which could allow consumption-led growth to resume this year.