Nigeria’s biggest public company by revenue, MTN Nigeria Communications Plc (MTNN), earned N950.1 billion in revenue for the first half of the year, reflecting a one-fifth increase over what it reported in the corresponding period of last year.
Shares in the corporation gained 5.3 per cent on Friday following the news.
With voice, the wireless carrier’s predominant income source only improving 1.4 per cent, real help came for revenue growth by way of data income as it advanced by more than a half or N119.7 billion. Put another way, that singularly was responsible for as much as 75.4 per cent of the expansion in topline.
MTN widened its mobile subscriber base in the six months to June to 74.1 million. It had grown by 7.6 per cent or 5.7 million.
CEO Karl Toriola said in a separate document his firm committed “capex of N311.6 billion to accelerate the rollout of our 4G network, which now covers 75.3 per cent (compared to 65.1 per cent in H1 2021) of the population and accounts for 77.9 per cent of data traffic (compared to 67.2 per cent in H1 2021).”
The chief pressure point for earnings was finance costs – expenses incurred by MTNN in the borrowing of funds – which scaled up by 41.2 per cent.
This month, the local unit of Africa’ largest mobile network operator MTN Group Limited headquartered in Johannesburg, announced a debt-raising plan of N200 billion. It will fund network expansion, “working capital management and general corporate purpose” and is to be sourced by way of bond.
Profit before tax was 24.9 per cent larger at N268.6 billion, while net profit stood at N181.6 billion, 28.1 per cent more than a year ago.
The telco highlighted in its earning release note the achievement of its new payments unit MoMo PSB within the first seven weeks of launch, with 4.2 million fintech subscribers signed up for its wallet.
Momo PSB hit a rocky start in its bid to gain the advantage of starting first over rival telcos after it entered the Nigerian payments market in May.