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From Pinatubo to pandemic: Dennis Anthony Uy turns P3M capital to over P3B in cash plus control of P145B Converge

Bilyonaryo Dennis Anthony Uy has netted P3.227 billion in cool cash from the initial public offering of his baby, Converge ICT Solution.

Through Comclark Network and Technology Corp., Uy will still own 63.2 percent of post-IPO Converge which is valued at P145 billion on paper, the 23rd biggest stock on the Philippine Stock Exchange based on market cap.

Uy is just behind Lucio Co’s Puregold (P122.175 billion) and ahead of Robina Gokongwei’s Robinsons Retail Holdings Inc. (P103.205 billion) and Andrew Tan’s Megaworld (P100 billion).

Uy’s partner, New York-based private equity firm Warburg Pincus LLC, also had a windfall on its investment in Converge in the IPO.

Warburg, through Coherent Cloud, cashed in P13.603 billion or $280 million from the partial sale of its stake in Converge.

This is a 24 percent gain on its $225 million investment in Converge un 2019.

Even with the sale, Warburg still has a 13.8 percent stake after the IPO, or $42 million in house money.

It has been a long road for Uy who pumped in P3 million into a cable TV company in his adopted hometown, Angeles City, Pampanga, still struggling from the ashes of Mount Pinatubo in the early 1990s.

“I initially thought it (Uy’s Angeles City Cable Television Network) was a terrible idea because the city was covered with lahar and volcanic ash, and the economic movement was very limited. But Dennis is one of a kind, He has a gift of seeing things that are not obvious to many,” said former Angeles City mayor Ed Pamintuan.

The Fujian-born Uy, who ran a betamax and VHS rental during college, also found success in building one of Angeles City’s first shopping malls, Savers, before going into fiber broadband.

The IPO raised P7.971 billion for Converge’s initial capital for Uy’s goal of providing high-quality internet access to 60 percent of Filipino households by 2025.

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