MTN, Africa and the Middle East biggest mobile phone group, expects profits to surge in the first half, boosted by foreign exchange gains.
The company said on Friday that its headline earnings per share (HEPS) will be at least 195 cents or 100% higher, representing HEPS of greater than 390 cents for the six months ended 30 June 2020, compared with HEPS of 195 cents in the previous year.
HEPS is South Africa’s main profit gauge.
The South African-based operator said HEPS benefited from non-operational items for the six months totalling 50 cents per share (June 2019: 55 cents negative impact on HEPS) of which more than half related to foreign exchange gains.
Also read: MTN’s Internet Users Hits 100 Million Mark
MTN has reached a significant milestone by recording 100 million active data users on its networks across Africa and the Middle East, the telco revealed on Thursday.
The company has a total base of more than 257 million customers in 21 markets. Growth through scaling data and digital services is central to its strategy. The group is overcoming barriers to greater mobile internet adoption by extending its 3G and 4G coverage, accelerating smartphone adoption and transforming prices.
MTN wants to bridge the digital divide by ensuring that rural people in Africa and the Middle East are connected to the internet through its network.
Last November, MTN revealed its innovative rural connectivity strategy.
In the past three years, well over 100 million more people in MTN’s footprint have been covered by its data network. This brings the group’s network coverage for data services to beyond 480 million people. However, about 60% of rural populations in Africa remain unconnected. To benefit from connectivity, they need affordable devices as well as the digital literacy to easily access relevant and meaningful content.