…gains 6.1million new subscribers in one year.
The Telecommunications giant, MTN Nigeria has recorded an impressive growth in its voice revenue amounting to N872.4billion for the year 2019.
This was revealed in the telcos’ audited results for the financial year ended 31 December 2019.
The feat, according to MTNN, was made possible by focusing on building its subscriber base for the year.
While attributing the success to this, the Telco disclosed its mobile subscribers increased by 6.1 million to 64.3 million during this period. This represents a 10.5% net growth from the numbers recorded in the previous year.
It announced its service revenue increased by 12.6% to NGN1.2 trillion from the N1.039 trillion generated in 2018. The voice revenue growth remained healthy at 8.4% while accounting for 72.7% of the service revenue.
Also, the active data users increased by 6.5 million to 25.2 million representing a significant 34.9% increase from 2018.
“As a result, the ratio of active data users to total mobile subscribers increased by 7.1pp to 39.2% in 2019 with strong potential for future growth”, the report stated.
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Speaking on this, the Chief Executive Officer of MTN Nigeria, Mr Ferdi Moolman attributed the increase to certain initiatives that enhanced coverage and drove data usage penetration.
““I am pleased with our performance in 2019, which demonstrates the progress we have made in the implementation of our BRIGHT strategy. Despite a challenging operating environment, we continued to deliver double-digit growth in service revenue in line with our medium-term guidance.
“These initiatives include optimising frequencies, expanding our 4G network coverage with over 6,000 additional sites leveraging 800MHz spectrum and repositioning our commercial data offerings.
“We closed the year with 132 cities covered by 4G and became the first mobile network operator in West Africa to demonstrate the capability of 5G technology.” Moolman said.
MTN Nigeria’s financial report shows an increase in the adoption of the smartphone by MTN users in Nigeria. Data which is essentially used on smartphones showed increased traffic of about 85.8%.
At the end of the year, smartphone penetration on the network was 41.8%, with over 5.3 million new smartphones added, bringing smartphone penetration to 41.8% , while data traffic rose by 85.8%.
This resulted in a 42.4% increase in data revenue for the year. The contribution of data to service revenue has also increased to 18.8% from 14.9 in 2018.
Besides the impressive financial reports, the network also recorded salient feats.
MTN’s Profit before tax also rose by 31.06% to N290.1 billion from the N221.34 billion which was recorded in 2018.
Similarly, MTN’s earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 45.2% to reach N629.9 billion.
The telecom company also showed increased profitability with its business model as the EBITDA margin rose from 44.8% to 53.9%. Free cash flow rose by 26.6% to N316.1 billion.
However, the report shows an increase in most of its operating costs. Capital expenditure, excluding Right of Use (ROU) assets, increased by 13.1% to peak at N208.3 billion at the close of 2019.
In 2019, MTN’s fintech revenue grew by 23.3%. MTN fintech revenue rose by 23.3% in 2019
The company’s Value Added Service (VAS) business which includes mobile money (Fintech) rose from N32.2 billion in 2018 to peak at N37.1 billion at the end of 2019. The VAS revenue also includes airtime lending (Digital) and subscriber identification module (SIM) back up services.
The company’s active base for digital subscriptions surpassed 2.1 million users in 2019. In the report, the growth of its super-agent (MoMo) service that now has over 108,000 registered agents nationwide was also highlighted.