By Kehinde Ibrahim Lagos
MTN Nigeria has announced its unaudited results for the quarter ended 31 March 2022, where it recorded N96.8 billion profit after tax, which is a 31.3 per cent increase in profit.
The telecoms company also recorded an additional 1.7 subscribers to its network, within the same period.
It however said its cumulative mobile subscribers declined by 1.3 million to 70.2 million year on year (YoY), impacted by the regulatory restrictions on new SIM sales and activations.
According to the financial statement released, active data users increased by 3.4 million to 35.9 million YoY. It added 1.6 million active users in Q1 2022 vs Q4 2021. Active fintech subscribers rose by 6.2 million to 10.7 million YoY, and it added 1.3 million subscribers in Q1 2022 vs Q4 2021. Its service revenue increased by 22.0 per cent to N469.8 billion.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 25.7 per cent to N257.1 billion. EBITDA margin increased by 1.5 percentage points to 54.6 per cent.
The statement further said that earnings per share rose by 31.3 per cent to N4.76 kobo, while capital expenditure (Capex) rose by 80.8 per cent to N162.5 billion, up by156.8 per cent to N81.2 billion, excluding right of use assets and final dividend of N8.57 kobo per share for 2021.
Analysing the financial results, MTN Nigeria CEO, Mr. Karl Toriola, said: “We have continued to make good progress in the first quarter, building on the momentum we achieved in Q4 2021 and delivering several key milestones as we grow our connectivity business and platforms.
This was achieved against a backdrop of significant geopolitical volatility exacerbated by the war in Ukraine. This conflict has significantly impacted energy prices, broader inflation, supply chains and consumer spending.”
He said he was pleased that the telecoms company made significant strides in deepening relationships with all its stakeholders while substantially enhancing its contributions to government revenue.
“In recognition of our remarkable performance in remittance of taxes despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) recognised MTN Nigeria as a top 20 taxpayer and one of the best tax compliant organisations in Nigeria for the 2021 tax year.
“In terms of strategic milestones, we concluded the first phase of a series of transactions to increase Nigerian ownership in MTN Nigeria, and we are delighted to have welcomed 126,720 retail investors to our shareholder base, many of whom are first-time investors. This includes Nigerian pension funds representing approximately 6.5 million Nigerian contributors. As at 31 March 2022, the number of retail shareholders had increased to approximately 139,000, demonstrating the advances in MTN’s localisation imperative,” Toriola said.
He added that MTN Nigeria also completed a group-wide brand refresh to position the business appropriately as it accelerates its growth and scale its platforms through its Ambition 2025 strategy.
“In addition, we have fully paid for one lot of 100MHz in the 3.5GHz spectrum band and have been assigned the 3500 – 3600 MHz frequencies for 10 years. We will launch our 5G services once regulatory approval is obtained.
“Post the reporting period, we were granted final approval for our MoMo Payment Service Bank (PSB) by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). This will enable us to offer financial services in line with the CBN’s guidelines and support the government in fulfilling its agenda of driving financial inclusion in Nigeria,” he said.
Toriola added:” Although our mobile subscriber base declined by 1.9 per cent YoY from 71.5 million in March 2021 to 70.2 million, we sustained the growth trajectory from Q4 2021 as we ramp up capacity for SIM registration and NIN enrolment. As a result, we added 1.7 million subscribers in Q1 2022. In addition, active data subscribers rose by 10.5 per cent YoY to 35.9 million, with 1.6 million added in Q1 as we continued to drive data conversion from our new and existing subscriber base.