MTN South Africa is strengthening its market position after it reported on Thursday that its customers rose 2% to 29,1 million in the quarter to end-September driven by pre-paid market. By Gugu Lourie
The cellphone operator attributed this growth to a 3,1% rise in the pre-paid subscriber base, supported by the continued success of attractive below-the-line campaigns.
The contract subscriber base recorded a 2,6% decline to 5,2 million due to the disconnections of approximately 90 000 low-cost router SIMs recorded on the Autopage subscriber base and low availability of handsets.
The mobile phone operator has been losing customers to rivals – Cell C and Vodacom.
MTN South Africa’s data revenue increased 40% and now contributes 31,5% to total revenue. This was driven by attractive segmented data bundles and an increased uptake of digital services.
The rollout of the 3G and LTE networks continued to make good progress with 1 746 largely co-located 3G and 811 LTE sites added during the quarter. ARPU increased 8,8% for the quarter.
MTN Group reported a muted subscriber growth, showing a o.9% increase in the quarter to end-September.
“The Group’s third quarter results reflect continued progress made in the South African operation strengthening its market position and significant improvements in network quality following corrective measures taken in MTN Nigeria,” said MTN Group CEO, Sifiso Dabengwa.
MTN Nigeria recorded a marginal decline in its subscriber base to 62,5 million subscribers, due to the disconnection of 5,1 million subscribers at the end of August 2015 in line with industry-wide regulatory registration requirements. To date, 3,4 million of these subscribers have been reconnected.
MTN Irancell delivered a strong performance in a competitive market increasing its subscriber base by 3,0% to 45,5 million with an incremental increase in market share, due to on-net bonus promotions and attractive data bundles.