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SA gov’t included in MTN top brass meeting

Dr Naledi Pandor, minister of international relations and cooperation.
Dr Naledi Pandor, minister of international relations and cooperation.

South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor and Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies Khumbudzo Ntshavheni - as well as by Nigeria’s High Commissioner Muhammad Haruna Manta - have participated in a three-day strategy meeting between leaders of the MTN Group and MTN Nigeria.

According to the operator, the MTN Group this week hosted MTN Nigeria’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee in Johannesburg to discuss MTN Nigeria’s strategic priorities for the next three years.

Nigeria remains MTN’s biggest and most profitable market.

In April this year, ITWeb reported on the company’s Q1 2022 trading update according to which MTN Nigeria’s service revenue had increased by 22% to N469.8-billion; earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 25.7% to N257.1-billion; and profit after tax grew by 31.3% to N96.8-billion.

Earnings per share rose by 31.3% to N4.76 kobo.

ITWeb added that in the six months to June, MTN Nigeria mobile subscribers increased by 7.6% to 74.1 million, active data users increased by 13.2% to 36.8 million, while active Fintech subscribers rose by 87.3% to 11.5 million.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 22.1% to N509.3 billion and the EBITDA margin increased by 0.9 percentage points (pp) to 53.6%. In the period, MTN’s profit before tax grew by 24.9% to N268.6-billion, while profit after tax grew by 28.1% to N181.6-billion.

MTN Nigeria CEO Karl Toriola.
MTN Nigeria CEO Karl Toriola.

MTN Nigeria CEO Karl Toriola is quoted: “We are pleased with the progress since the launch (of MoMo Payment Service Bank) and excited about the prospects of our Fintech business and driving financial inclusion in the country. As at the end of June 2022, we recorded 4.2 million registered MoMo wallets, of which 2.4 million are active, generating MoMo transaction volume of approximately seven million within six weeks of operations.”

First SA engagement

The three-day working visit – hosted by MTN Group Chairman Mcebisi Jonas and MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita – brought together for the first time in South Africa the boards and executive management teams of MTN Nigeria and MTN Group.

The MTN Nigeria delegation was led by Chairman Ernest Ndukwe and CEO Toriola.

“Strong bi-national relationships between Nigeria and South Africa are critical for Africa’s progress,” said Jonas. “As MTN, we appreciate that our own progress cannot happen without the two nations building stronger and stronger ties and providing leadership to the continent.”

Mupita said MTN Nigeria represented approximately 40% of the value of MTN Group, and as such its achievements were key to the success of the Group: “As MTN Group, we are committed to supporting the business and ensuring that its success goes beyond just strong operational and financial performance, but also represents success for all stakeholders.”

“Initiatives such as extending rural broadband, driving financial inclusion from MTN Nigeria’s Payment Services Banking licence and ensuring further localisations remain critical for success and sustainability,” he added.

Discussions covered navigation of unprecedented macro challenges faced by businesses and opportunities these changes provided.

The MTN Nigeria leadership’s visit follows that of MTN Group’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee to Lagos in early July, when they held their own strategy retreat.

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