DITO Telecommunity Corp., a joint venture between businessman Dennis Uy and China Telecom, said it is hiring more staff to support its network expansion as it set to commercially launch its telco services by March 2021 or earlier.
“When we started we have about 100 people. Currently, we are nearing the 300 mark and by end of the year we will probably double that,” DITO chief administrative officer Adel Tamano said in a virtual press conference.
“We are one of the industries that instead of laying off people we are actively hiring people because we need to rollout our network,” he added.
Tamano said the company is on track commercially launch its telco services by March 2021 or earlier despite the extension of the technical audit of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).
“The March 2021 date, that’s the latest we will launch. We are moving heaven and earth to meet that, but we are pushing it earlier,” Tamano said.
NTC earlier issued a resolution extending the July 2020 technical audit under the certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN) provisions of DITO due to COVID-19 crisis.
Under the current extension, DITO is given within six months to deliver the commitments for the technical audit requirements- that is to provide a speed of 27 megabits per second to cover 37 percent of the population.
DITO chief technology officer Rodolfo Santiago said out of the 1,300 cell sites committed, 300 towers were erected and active.
“That’s about 9 percent of the population already covered. The 37 percent percent population coverage, we can achieve that by October,” Santiago said.
Santiago also said that DITO’s outlook in the longterm is positive despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The telco industry is the least affected by the disruption in the business. Locally, the demand for digital services actually increase and the incumbents are trying their best to meet the surging demand for their services,” he said.
“The longterm outlook of DITO will improve rather than change to negative, Santiago added.
DITO targets a 30 percent market share within the first few years of operations.