Globe Telecom highlighted moves to lower operating expenses to maintain profitability and offset anticipated margin pressure, after booking profit and revenue gains in 2022.

In a statement, president and CEO Ernest Cu noted 2022 was a challenging year marked by inflationary pressures, high interest rates and weakened consumer confidence, but argued the company showed resilience.

The operator forecast mid-single-digit revenue growth in 2023 and profit to be hit by the increasing contribution of lower-margin data-related products, offset by cost reductions.

Capex rose 9 per cent year-on-year to PHP101.4 billion ($1.8 billion) in 2022, with the operator stating it aims to bring free cash flow back to a more sustainable level by cutting the outlay this year.

Mobile service revenue increased 3 per cent to PHP107.5 billion, with 8 per cent growth in data services offsetting 13 per cent and 5 per cent declines in voice and SMS revenue, respectively.

Prepaid ARPU declined 1 per cent to PHP98 and post-paid rose 2 per cent to PHP839.

Its prepaid subscriber base remained at 84.2 million and post-paid was up 1 per cent to 2.5 million.

Net profit increased 46 per cent to PHP34.6 billion, with total service revenue rising 4 per cent to PHP158 billion.

Corporate data revenue grew 21 per cent to PHP17.2 million and home broadband fell 8 per cent to PHP27.1 million.

The operator upgraded around 13,600 mobile sites to LTE and installed 2,267 5G sites nationwide.

A government SIM registration drive is expected to reduce its subscriber base as non-active modules are “churned out of the system”, but the company expects no impact on 2023 revenue.