MANILA - TV5 aims to break even by 2017, or eight years after the PLDT Group took over the broadcast firm.
"Well, EBITDA positive by 2017, hopefully," Manuel V. Pangilinan, chairman of Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company last week said when asked when he sees the broadcast network turning a profit.
EBITDA refers to earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, and as such is a proxy for cash flow.
In November last year, Pangilinan said 2015 would be a "better year" for TV5 as the PLDT Group would continue to support the third-ranked broadcast company amid intense competition.
"The PLDT group, the entire group of companies within our fold, will continue to support TV5 in all the tough challenges that lie ahead of us," Pangilinan had said, adding that the group will tap its large customer base in mobile, fixed and pay TV, as well as Metro Pacific Investments Corporation's (MPIC) customers in power, water utility, toll ways and even light rail to increase the broadcast firm’s viewership.
Pangilinan also chairs MPIC, which like PLDT is owned by Hong Kong-listed First Pacific Company Limited.
TV5 president Emmanuel C. Lorenzana said the broadcast network is now a "very healthy company" and is well on its way to profitability in 2-3 years as revenues grow and costs drop.
In 2009, MediaQuest Holdings Inc. bought TV5 from the Cojuangco family for P4 billion, and acquired MPB Primedia of Malaysia, a major block-timer, for $16 million. MediaQuest is a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund and holds TV5 and Cignal TV.
TV5's international arm, Pilipinas Global Network Limited (PGN), recently signed a distribution agreement with Malaysia's MEASAT Satellite Systems Sdn Bhd. to use its global beam in distributing the Aksyon TV International and Kapatid TV5 channels to over 120 countries across Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Eastern Africa.
Kapatid TV5 is a 24-hour general entertainment Tagalog language channel, whereas AksyonTV International is a 24-hour Tagalog language channel dedicated to bringing the latest in Philippine news and sports.
PGN is a British Virgin Islands-registered company that is 60-percent owned by PLDT and 40-percent owned by TV Network Inc.