MTN Ghana has high hopes for Ambition 2025 strategy
MTN Ghana says it will continue to execute its Ambition 2025 strategy, its roadmap to achieve objectives including vigorous roll out of 4G, a service revenue target of 13% to 15%, intensive focus on MoMo, MyMTN and the ayoba super app – and a plan of action to withstand COVID-19, emerging global trends and economic uncertainty.
This is according to the company’s statement coinciding with the presentation of its annual results for the year ended 31 December 2021.
According to the results, the company rolled out 131 2G, 120 3G and 1,446 4G sites and modernised 2,121 existing 4G sites, extended 4G network and data services to additional 1.7 million people, the expansion of the subscriber base by 1.0 million YoY to 25.4 million, in active data user growth of 15.3% YoY with a corresponding growth of 34.3% in Megabytes consumed per active subscriber, as well as growth in voice revenue by 4.9% YoY to GHS2,626 million.
The company stated: “The slowing rate of growth in voice is largely in line with expectations and due to the shift in customer behaviour towards data. Accordingly, the contribution of voice to service revenue declined from 41.8% to 34.1% YoY in favour of increased contributions from data and Mobile Money. Data revenue grew by 56.3% YoY to GHS2,769 million. This was a result of increased data traffic (+54.9%) owing to various commercial interventions, improvements to the network, changes in consumer usage behaviour and increased smartphones on the network (+10.6%). The contribution of data to service revenue increased from 29.6% to 36.0% YoY in line with our revenue diversification strategy.”
In the explanation of its results, Chairman Ishmael Yamson and CEO Selorm Adadevoh said active MoMo users recovered from the challenges in H1 to achieve a growth of 3.8% YoY.
“We also expanded merchants (+29.9% YoY) and agents (+18.7% YoY) to support ongoing growth of the MoMo ecosystem and to further enhance financial inclusion. Digital revenue declined by 5.1% YoY to GHS0.2 million. During the period. we embarked on a cleanup of our digital products and services to enhance transparency to our customers, improved our digital messaging channels and added more value to our music and gaming offerings to meet the entertainment needs of our customers. These helped grow our active digital subscribers by 1.1 million to 4.2 million in the period. We continued to drive operational efficiency in the business within the period. This helped drive a 33.7% YoY growth in EBITDA and a margin expansion of 2.3pp to 55.0%. Profit after tax increased by 43.5% YoY.”
Yamson and Adadevoh also provided updates on several regulatory issues, including the introduction of E-Levy, national SIM registration and Significant market power (SMP).
They said, “On 17 November 2021, the Finance Minister presented the Budget Statement and Economic Policy of Ghana for the 2022 financial year. It introduced a levy on electronic transactions to widen the tax net. The 1.75% e-Levy will cover electronic transactions on Mobile Money, bank transfers, merchant payments and inward remittances. The levy when approved will be borne by the sender, except for inward remittances, in which case the levy will be borne by the receiver. The e-Levy will not be applied to transactions totalling GHS100 or less per day per customer.”
During the year, the National Communications Authority (NCA) directed all telecom operators to embark on a nationwide re-registration of all SIM cards using the Ghana National ID card. This exercise began on 1 October 2021 and is expected to run until 31 March 2022.
“MTN is committed to supporting this national initiative to register all existing and new subscribers using the Ghana National ID card which would benefit the telecoms and financial services industry through improvement in security and reduction in fraud within the country. Accordingly, we have committed significant resources to this exercise. We also remain keen to work with the Regulator and National Identification Authority to ensure all customers are registered and challenges are raised in a timely manner for resolution,” MTN Ghana’s execs added.
“Following the SMP designation in 2020, there were seven remedies. Three have been defined and implemented. One is in the advanced stage of implementation and the remaining three shall be worked as and when they are due or defined by the Regulator. The three SMP remedies implemented are, the application of a 30% asymmetrical interconnect rate reduction for two years (01 October, 2020), review and approval of all MTN pricing by the NCA (1 October, 2020) and implementation of the on-net / off-net, price differential removal on default tariffs affecting data and promotional offers as well,” they continued.
The company said it delivered sustained growth in its core business during 2021. “Service revenue grew by 28.5%, driven mainly by increased investment in the network and commercial initiatives which resulted in growth of our customer base and usage across our core business.”