November 7, 2018
A company that teamed up with China Telecom is the provisional third major telco player in the country, the National Telecommunications Commission ( NTC) announced on Wednesday.
Davao businessman Dennis Uy's Udenna Corporation, its subsidiary Chelsea Logistics Holdings, Corp. and China Telecom which formally presented its bid as the Mislatel consortium, passed evaluation by the selection committee.
Mislatel promised a minimum of 5 mbps up to 55 mbps connection speed for the next five years. They will also cover 10-50 percent of the Phillippines and is willing to invest P40 to P140 billion in their first year as third telco player.
Adel Tamano, spokesperson of Udenna Corporation, said they commended the NTC's fair and transparent bidding process.
"We are honored and humble to be chosen as the provisional new major player," Tamayo said.
"Once we are confirmed, we promise to give a world class telco that Filipinos deserve," he added.
Acting Information and Communication Technology Secretary Eliseo Rio said two disqualified bidders will file their motion for reconsideration.
"Two telco firms will file their MOR ( Motion for Reconsideration)," he said. "If they have better offer, then they may grab the project from them (Udenna), he said in an interview with The Daily Manila Shimbun.
Sear Telco and PT&T were disqualified due to absence of required documents.
Sear Telco, a consortium led by Tier One Communications and former Ilocos Sur Gov. Luis "Chavit" Singson's LCS Group failed to submit the P700 million participation security.
PT&T, a local firm, was disqualified as they did not have a certification of technical capability from NTC.
Sear Telco will file their motion for reconsideration within three days.
Sear Telco questioned Udenna's congressional franchise as it is under a different company but Rio said it is not a concern since it's not included on the government's "terms of reference".
"It's up to TierOne if they want to file a case against Udenna," he said.
Sear Telco claimed that the Mindanao-based franchise, Mindanao Islamic Telephone Co. also signed a contract with them.
On the PT&T's claim NTC didn't give the certification they needed, NTC Deputy Commissioner Edgardo Cabarios said they sent a letter to PT&T but they refused to accept it.
"There is a letter responding to the request but we were told that they refused to accept the letter," he said in an ambush interview.
Cabarios said the letter informed the PT&T that the commission can't give them a certification.
NTC Deputy Commissioner Delilah Deles revealed that the local firm did not meet the technical capability requirements based on their performance for the last 10 years.
PT&T President James Velasquez claimed that NTC didn't give them the certification they are requesting until the last minute before closing of bid submission.
"All the requirements are there, except the certification from NTC... if they only give the certification then we 100 percent complied," Velasquez said in a separate interview.
"Clearly if you look at MC (memorandum circular) 09-09-2018, we complied because it is clear that national is equivalent to regional operations (but) they changed that in the bid bulletin," he added.
Cabarios said they respect the decision of those who didn't submit their documents.
"We respect their decision in not submitting their bid documents," he said.
In a statement, NOW Telecom said they were advised by their legal team to withdraw from submitting bid documents as it will affect the petition they filed at the Court of Appeals.
"To preserve its rights and avoid any further situation where it may be declared to have waived the reliefs sought in its complaint," it said in a statement.
Converge ICT, which is teamed up with Teltech and Korean firm KT Corporation, also backed out.
NTC is looking for a 3rd telco player after they were ordered by President Rodrigo Duterte together with Department of Information and Communication Technology to look for a new major telco player that will compete with Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) and Globe Telecom. Ella Dionisio/DMS
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