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Ambitious Target for Broadband Penetration – Coronation Merchant

Internet subscriptions stood at 152.3 million in August ’22, representing an increase of 0.2% m/m and 8.6% y/y




The latest data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the industry regulator, show that internet subscriptions stood at 152.3 million in August ’22, representing an increase of 0.2% m/m and 8.6% y/y.

On a month-on-month basis, there were 261,094 new subscribers, which is the lowest m/m increase recorded this year. Anecdotal evidence points towards weaker spending capacity among consumers, following the upticks in the headline inflation. We assume that to manage costs, consumers are reducing their usage of multiple
devices that require SIMs to access the internet.

MTN Nigeria (MTNN) accounted for the largest share (42%) of internet subscriptions in August ‘22. Meanwhile, Globacom, Airtel, and 9Mobile accounted for 28%, 27% and 3% of total subscriptions, respectively. Among these mobile network operators, Globacom and MTNN recorded m/m increases in internet subscriptions at 1.2% and 0.2% respectively.

Meanwhile, Airtel and 9mobile both recorded declines of -0.5% and -2.9% in total subscriptions.

Regarding market share by mobile network operators, MTNN accounted for 37.9% of total internet subscriptions. Based on MTNN’s Q2 ’22 results, service revenue grew by 18% y/y.

This was due to significant growth in data (+50.6% y/y). The increase in data consumption can be largely attributed to a y/y increase in active data subscriptions, increased usage (average MB per user rose by 61.8% y/y) and data traffic (+79.3% y/y). These increases were supported by expansion in network capacity and deeper 4G penetration. Notably, 4G coverage increased to 77.9%, compared with 71.7% in Q1 ‘22.

In August, broadband penetration marginally increased to 44.7%, compared with 44.5% recorded in July ’22. Based on local newswires, MTNN and Airtel increased the prices of their internet data services by c.10% in October. This may impact the pace of achieving the FGN’s broadband penetration in the next three years. For context, the FGN had set a target of 90% penetration by 2025.

This is compared with African countries such as Morocco (84%), Egypt (71%) and South Africa (68%).

Furthermore, rising inflation continues to pose as a key risk to consumer spending, given that consumers are seeking affordable data bundles across networks. The latest inflation report shows that the communications segment increased by 11.8% y/y in September ‘22 vs 11.6% y/y recorded in the previous month. Recently, the FGN suspended its plan to introduce a 5% excise duty on voice calls, SMS, and data services.

Excluding the potential macro benefits, deep broadband penetration enhances efficiency and supports socio-economic activities such as improved healthcare services, better public safety and a boost to energy supply on the back of smart grid technology enabled by broadband, among others.

A World Bank analysis shows that every 10% increase in broadband penetration can accelerate GDP growth by about 1.38 percentage points in developing economies. In our view, affordable, reliable and accessible broadband access will assist with bridging the wide digital divide and encourage competitiveness among countries.

Based on the latest national accounts, the ICT sector posted a 6.6% y/y growth in Q2 ’22 and currently accounts for 18.4% of total GDP.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Nasdaq,, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Airtel Africa Announces Interim Dividend Amidst Robust Half-Year Performance



Airtel Financial Results - Investors King

Airtel Africa Plc has declared its intention to pay an interim dividend for the half-year period ending September 2023.

The telecommunication giant, listed on both the NGX and the London Stock Exchange, shared this development in a corporate notice titled ‘Announcement of Interim Dividend Currency Exchange Rates’ filed with the Nigerian Exchange Limited on Tuesday.

Airtel Africa disclosed that the interim dividend, amounting to 2.38 US cents per ordinary share, would be disbursed on December 15, 2023, to qualified shareholders.

Notably, shareholders have the option to receive the dividend in US dollars, GB pounds, or Nigerian naira, based on their preference.

The adopted exchange rates for currency conversion were set at 1 USD = 858.24 Nigerian naira and 1 USD = 0.8190 GB pounds.

Airtel Africa emphasized that these rates were determined by the exchange rates applicable to the US dollar as of Friday.

Despite recording a loss after tax of $13 million, primarily attributed to a foreign exchange loss of $471 million in finance costs, Airtel Africa showcased robust performance in its half-year report.

The company reported a 19.7% growth in revenue currency to $2.62 billion, with double-digit revenue growth across all segments.

Mobile services revenue increased by 18.3%, driven by growth in voice and data revenue, while mobile money revenue saw a significant surge of 30.9%.

The company’s EBITDA also exhibited a commendable increase of 21.2%, reflecting a 70 basis points margin improvement over the prior period.

Airtel Africa remains resilient in the face of inflationary cost pressures and foreign exchange headwinds, showcasing a promising outlook for investors.

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MTN Evaluates Exit from Three African Markets Amid Regional Challenges



MTN Nigeria - Investors King

African telecommunications giant MTN is reportedly contemplating an “orderly exit” from its operations in Guinea-Bissau, Guinea-Conakry, and Liberia, according to a report by Business Insider Africa.

The company, which currently operates in 19 countries across Africa and the Middle East, aims to streamline its portfolio and address challenges in the West and Central Africa (Weca) region.

While the exact reasons for the potential exit remain undisclosed, MTN’s financial reports indicate broader challenges in the Weca segment.

CEO Ralph Mupita highlighted concerns over inflation and currency devaluation in multiple markets.

The company’s 2022 financials revealed a 1.7% decline in EBITDA margin due to pricing pressures, fintech channel subsidies, and macroeconomic hurdles.

Although Guinea-Bissau, Guinea-Conakry, and Liberia contribute only 1.6% to MTN’s total revenue, the move aligns with the company’s strategic focus on optimizing its market presence.

MTN holds a significant market share, approximately 30%, in Guinea-Bissau and Guinea-Conakry, while Lonestar MTN is the second-largest telecom operator in Liberia.

The potential exit reflects MTN’s commitment to adapting its business strategy to navigate the evolving economic landscape and optimize its portfolio for sustained growth.

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Nigeria’s Ministry of Communications Secures N1 Billion for Three Million Technical Talent Program



Telecommunications - Investors King

Dr. Bosun Tijani, Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy, has announced the acquisition of N1 billion in funding for the implementation of the Three Million Technical Talent program.

During a council meeting with directors of the Information Communication and Technology department in all Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) in Abuja, Dr. Tijani emphasized the ministry’s commitment to building Nigeria’s technical talent base, strengthening the nation’s digital economy.

The minister highlighted the critical role of technology in the country’s economic growth and development.

He emphasized that effective collaboration, the creation of an enabling environment, and a workforce of public servants prepared to embrace change are essential to achieving the best results.

Dr. Tijani stated, “The best way to address societal problems is to bring people together to discuss and find solutions. Our meeting must be critical and effective in resolving issues to produce tangible outcomes. This will attract stakeholders and private investors who will provide the necessary resources.”

He emphasized the ministry’s commitment to its mission of training three million individuals, even in the absence of a dedicated budget.

The support of various organizations and companies has made it possible to secure N1 billion for the project, demonstrating the increasing interest and investment in Nigeria’s digital talent and technology initiatives.

Dr. Tijani urged the council to play its part in realizing the administration’s digitization objectives.

He called for the transformation of the civil service to maximize the utilization of limited resources, eliminating outdated practices, such as paper-based documentation, to usher in a new era of efficiency and digital innovation.

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