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PLDT Rises to 5-Year High After Outsourcing Sale: Manila Mover

Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., the nation’s biggest company by market value, rose to the highest in about five years after agreeing to sell a controlling stake in its outsourcing unit to CVC Capital Partners Ltd.

The telecommunications company climbed 1.1 percent to 2,912 pesos at the close of trading, the highest since Feb. 21, 2008. The carrier has jumped 15 percent this year, boosting its market value to $15.5 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

PLDT expects to get more than $300 million from the sale of the stake in SPi Global Holdings Inc., President Napoleon Nazareno said in a mobile-phone message today. The Makati City, Philippines-based company will also keep 20 percent of the unit, letting it benefit from possible growth under the new owner.

“CVC’s entry could bring the business process outsourcing business to a higher level,” said James Lago, head of research at Manila-based PCCI Securities Brokers Corp. “That has been elusive under PLDT.”

The phone operator will also invest in Asia Outsourcing Gamma Ltd., the CVC unit buying SPi Global, it said in a statement. SPi offers services including call-center operations and help-desks.

“The transaction announced today represents an opportunity for us to realize attractive returns for the benefit of the PLDT Group and its stakeholders,” Chairman Manuel Pangilinan said in the statement.

Asia Outsourcing will use UBS AG to help it arrange a loan of about $200 million to aid in the financing of the acquisition, according to a person familiar with the matter.

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