MTN Reaches 250 Million Customer Milestone

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MTN Group announced what they believe is an encouraging set of results for the year ended 31 December 2019 – most notably the addition of 18 million customers to reach a total of 251 million and that group president and CEO, Rob Shuter, would be stepping down from his role at the end of his contract in March 2021.

“In 2019, the 25th anniversary of MTN Group, we delivered commercial momentum across our operations as well as great progress in our strategy and strong financial results, despite challenging trading conditions,” says Shuter.

Data users and Fintech customers also increased by 17 million to reach 95 million and by 7 million to total 35 million respectively.

“This growth is central to our belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life. We also saw improvements in customer experience, network quality and market share across the group.”

MTN launched its instant messaging platform Ayoba, which is now live in 12 markets with two million monthly active users.

Commenting on the company’s financial performance, Shuter says, “we delivered service revenue growth of 9,8% with an acceleration in the second half. Our EBITDA margin improved and reported headline earnings per share grew by 62%. Our network rollout brought a further 69 million people into 4G coverage whilst reducing capex intensity. Improved cash flows during the year supported stable balance sheet ratios”.

MTN group service revenue reached R141,8 billion and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by 13,6% to R53,4 billion.

Operating cash flow increased by 18% and ROE rose from 11,5% in 2018 to 14,3% in 2019 – this is supported by double-digit growth in service revenue from both MTN Nigeria and MTN Ghana.

Shuter believes that MTN will improve data revenue growth in 2020, thanks to expanded 4G coverage in Nigeria and across the group. The company also plans to continue scaling up fintech and digital services.

Edited by Jenna Delport

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