MANILA - (UPDATED 6:59 p.m.) The chairman of GMA Network Inc said any move by San Miguel Corp to invest in the broadcast company will be quick, describing the food-and-beverage conglomerate's president as "anything but torpe."
But San Miguel top honcho Ramon S. Ang has yet to make an offer, let alone send a "dinner" invitation or "love letter," GMA7 chairman Felipe Gozon told reporters.
"Wala maski love letter. Hindi ako iniimbita for dinner. Si Ramon aggressive yan. Ramon Ang is anything but torpe," Gozon said, when asked if the San Miguel executive made a move to acquire the network after GMA7 and the group of Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co terminated negotiations.
Ang earlier said he was close to clinching a deal to invest in Solar Entertainment, a blocktimer in RPN 9. The government sequestered broadcast network had trimmed down its workforce - a move the company's labor union challenged thereafter.
PLDT talks can be revived
Gozon however said talks with PLDT chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan can be revived, adding that the initiative would have to come from the country's largest telecom company.
"If anybody is consistent here, ako iyon. I have consistently taken the position that we are not selling the company. Pero kung makakita kami ng offer na maganda, we will consider it," Gozon said, referring to him and two other families that control 70 percent of GMA7.
Last October, PLDT's media arm MediaQuest Holdings Inc and GMA7 terminated talks for the purchase of the broadcast company after they failed to arrive at mutually acceptable terms.
Both parties said the acquisition price was not the reason for the botched negotitations.
"It's really a question of share of the regulatory risks. So, doon hindi nagkasundo," Pangilinan had said, referring to the risk of any PLDT investment in GMA7 encountering regulatory roadblocks, as the deal would require government approval.
GMA7 holds a Congressional franchise, and so a PLDT buy-in may also undergo scrutiny by the legislature, especially since the telecom company has a stake in another network, TV5.
Pangilinan had said the termination of the GMA7 acquisition initiative was not expected to adversely impact the PLDT Group’s strategy of evolving from a traditional telco into a multimedia service company.
“The PLDT Group continues to believe that owning, producing and providing content across multiple platforms is an important component of its blueprint for growth and as such, intends to pursue its media strategy by building on MediaQuest’s current investments in TV5, the country's third largest free-to-air television network by audience share, and Cignal TV, the leading provider of direct-to-home satellite television services,” he added.
PLDT president Napoleon Nazareno said the company is mulling over a fresh investment in TV5 and Cignal, adding that the telco was looking at a "build strategy" after the merger option failed to prosper.
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