Nigeria’s telco posts quarterly earnings of $1bn amid declining subscriber base, rising energy costs

With subscriber base declining by 1.3 million to 70.2 million year-on-year because of regulatory restrictions on new SIM sales and activations, the firm disclosed that its active data users increased to 35.9 million y-o-y, while its fintech subscribers rose to 10.7 million.

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Nigeria’s mobile telecommunications operator, MTN Nigeria Communications, earned N421.49bn ($1bn) from calls and data in the first quarter of 2022.

Nigeria’s mobile telecommunications operator, MTN Nigeria Communications, earned N421.49bn ($1bn) from calls and data in the first quarter of 2022.

This is a 20.32 per cent increase from N350.31bn, which the telecoms company made from voice and data in the corresponding period of 2021. In its Q1, 2021 announcement, MTN revealed that it made N470.98bn in total revenue in 2022.

With subscriber base declining by 1.3 million to 70.2 million year-on-year because of regulatory restrictions on new SIM sales and activations, the firm disclosed that its active data users increased to 35.9 million y-o-y, while its fintech subscribers rose to 10.7 million.

Speaking on the results, MTN Nigeria Chief Executive Officer, Karl Toriola, said, “We continued to make good progress in the first quarter, building on the momentum we achieved in Q4 2021 and delivering several key milestones as we grow our connectivity business and platforms.

“This was achieved against a backdrop of significant geopolitical volatility exacerbated by the war in Ukraine. This conflict has significantly impacted energy prices, broader inflation, supply chains, and consumer spending.”

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According to the company boss, the number of retail investors in MTN was 139,000 after 126,720 investors became shareholders in the company’s first phase of a series of transactions to increase local ownership.

He added that the final approval for its MoMo Payment Service Bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria would enable the firm to offer financial services and drive financial inclusion in the nation.

Toriola stated, “Although our mobile subscriber base declined by 1.9 per cent YoY from 71.5 million in March 2021 to 70.2 million, we sustained the growth trajectory from Q4 2021 as we ramp up capacity for SIM registration and NIN enrolment.

“As a result, we added 1.7 million subscribers in Q1 2022. In addition, active data subscribers rose by 10.5 per cent YoY to 35.9 million, with 1.6 million added in Q1 as we continued to drive data conversion from our new and existing subscriber base.

Meanwhile, the firm approved a dividend payment of N174.53bn, translating to N8.57 kobo per every 2 kobo ordinary share to its shareholders.

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