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Review of Philippine Economic Performance in 2023

Despite the challenging macroeconomic headwinds that carried over from last year, the Philippines maintained its growth momentum. The government’s pro-business measures and active promotion of the country as an attractive investment destination sought to support the country’s infrastructure agenda and create more jobs. The private sector is once again expected to play a key role in the country’s development via the government’s liberalization efforts and public-private partnerships.

As a result, the Philippine economy posted Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of 5.6 percent in 2023 versus the previous year’s 7.6 percent. The unemployment rate fell to 3.1 percent versus 4.3 percent the prior year. The total number of unemployed declined to 1.6 million, lower than 2.2 million in 2022, with the labor force participation rate improving to 64.9 percent versus 64.7 percent the prior year.


Also, overseas remittances remained resilient with overseas Filipino workers sending money to support families at home and thus aiding the country’s consumption-driven economy, reaching a record 33.5 billion US dollars, surpassing by 2.9 percent the previous year’s high of 32.5 billion US dollars.


All these key economic drivers were achieved despite economic headwinds, including: inflation reaching a new high of 8.3 percent in the first quarter; higher for longer interest rates; a sluggish Chinese economy; the conflicts in Ukraine and Gaza; and, the weak Philippine Peso versus the US Dollar.


For 2024, economists believe that the country in the first half will continue to face headwinds from elevated inflation and interest rates as well as slow recovery in external demand, again negatively affecting consumption as households, particularly in the lower economic segments, struggle to make ends meet with an already squeezed family budget.


Review of Globe’s 2023 Performance


Despite this challenging economic backdrop, Globe closed the year 2023 with a new all-time high consolidated service revenues amounting to 162.3 billion pesos, outpacing last year’s record level of 158.0 billion pesos by three percent. This was mainly driven by the exceptional contribution from mobile, corporate data, and non-telco services.  Boosted by the company’s data-centric offerings, Globe’s total data revenues as a percentage of total consolidated service revenues increased to 83 percent from 81 percent last year, with the digital lifestyle becoming an integral part of Filipino life.


Also, the company’s non-telco revenues now account for three percent of total consolidated service revenues from 2.6 percent last year. This result was achieved notwithstanding the deconsolidation of ECPay from Globe’s books following the sale of its 77 percent stake to Mynt last September 2023[i].  On a comparable basis, by adjusting the prior period assuming the deconsolidation of ECPay, Globe’s total gross service revenues still would have grown by three percent year-on-year and quarter-on-quarter.


Staying true to Globe’s commitment to network and service excellence, your company invested a total of 70.6 billion pesos in capital expenditure (capex) for 2023 or 30 percent lower than last year.  The majority or 91 percent of this period’s total cash capex was allocated for data requirements to give Filipinos better and more meaningful digital experiences.  The record-high levels of capex in the past several years allowed your company to shift its focus towards capital efficiency and optimization.  Capex to revenue ratio likewise significantly declined from 64% in 2022 to 44% in 2023.


Globe Reinforces its Position as a Leading Innovator in the Country


Globe continued to reinforce our position as a leading innovator in the country, offering a spectrum of digital solutions in various sectors such as fintech, health tech, edutech, climate tech, adtech, shared services, investments and entertainment.


GCash is the Philippines’ largest cashless digital ecosystem, bannered across the ubiquity of its user base and the breadth of its six million merchants and social seller network, including over 900 merchant partners hosted in GLife.  GCash boasts of the most comprehensive suite of digital financial services, covering deposit savings, investments and funds management, and insurance. The trust and reliability of the GCash brand and platform further allowed it to reach an active user base that is 10x larger than the next e-wallet, based on statistics provided by


Through game-changing lending products, GCash has made significant strides towards its vision of Finance for All. GCash’s credit solution is backed by GScore, its proprietary trust and credit scoring platform that is built across transactional and behavioral data of our users. GScore enables GCash to provide credit access to over 3.9 million unique borrowers, majority of which are from lower socio-economic classes, and with two of every three borrowers being women.


GCash also extended its reach internationally by offering payment services in 17 countries through GCash Global Pay.  Meanwhile, GCash Overseas empowers overseas Filipinos in 6 countries to be able to access the GCash app internationally, giving them access to services such as Buy Load, Pay Bills, and Send Money.


Commitment to Sustainable Development


Globe remains steadfast in its commitment to uphold the Ten Principles on Human Rights, Labor, Environment and Anti-Corruption as a Participant in the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). In support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), your company demonstrates unwavering commitment to contribute to 10 out of the 17 SDGs, particularly SDG 9 on Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure and SDG 13 on Climate Action. This has been exemplified through its drive towards digitalization, coupled with proactive measures to reduce its carbon footprint.


In the same year, Globe continued to mark its leadership in sustainability as the company’s MSCI ESG Rating was upgraded to AA, entering Leader status. Your company also maintained its CDP score to B, still the highest score among telecom companies in the Philippines and entered the CDP Management band, a Medium Risk in Sustainalytics, and a constituent company in the FTSE4Good Index Series for eight straight years.


Globe is also a steadfast leader in corporate governance. It remains as the sole telco company in the Philippines to receive the prestigious Five Golden Arrow Award from the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD) for two straight years. It is also the only telco and local organization to be recognized as the “Best Corporate Governance Company-Telecom-Philippines 2022” by the International Finance Awards (IFA).


Globe’s Mission of Generating Sustained Value for Shareholders


Consistent with Globe’s mission of generating sustained value for its shareholders, the company paid out 14.4 billion pesos in common share dividends. This represents 75 percent of 2022 core net income, in line with our dividend policy of 60 to 75 percent of prior year’s core net income. Globe is committed to a sustainable dividend policy in line with earnings and cash flow generation.


Further to Globe’s commitment to a sustainable dividend policy, our Board of Directors approved the expansion of the dividend payout range to 60 to 90 percent of prior year’s core net income, from 60 to 75 percent. Through this adjustment, the company is afforded added flexibility with future declarations, particularly given the projected earnings and expected improvements in our cash flow generation, as we continue to reduce our capital spending.


Finally, this wider payout range allows the company to maximize value to our shareholders moving forward, as well as makes our dividend payouts more competitive against our regional peers.


In closing, 2023 was a time of greater expansion for Globe as it continued to deliver life-enabling innovations that solve the daily pain points of Filipinos. The company further cemented its standing as the foremost digital solutions provider in the Philippines, with an unrivaled ecosystem of products and services that make life better. Accordingly, I am deeply proud of the Globe leadership team and the entire organization. Moreover, I would like to thank our board for its engagement and advice amid another challenging year. And lastly, I thank you, our shareholders and stakeholders, for your continuing trust in the Globe brand. We hope to continue being your committed partner in achieving our shared objective of exponential and sustainable value creation.


[i] The deal is currently undergoing thorough reviews. Completion is expected upon receipt of approvals from the relevant regulatory bodies and satisfaction of closing conditions.


A Message from
Ernest Cu

As the President and CEO, Globe is committed to leading Filipinos through their digital transformation journey, embracing global technologies that also actively foster sustainable development.

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