Airtel posts 14pc growth in revenues in East Africa

Airtel recorded a 14 per cent growth in revenue to $ 659 million in East Africa for the six months ending September citing an increase in subscribers. According to Airtel’s financial report, voice revenues saw a growth of 5.4 per cent to $312 million across the East African market which includes Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Malawi and Zambia.

Data service registered a 21.2 per cent growth in revenues to $ 174 million while mobile money as well saw a 33.2 per cent growth in revenues to $132 million during the period under review. The telecom said that the double growth in revenue is due to an increase in subscriber numbers from 12.1 million to 14.9 million as well as 4G infrastructure network expansion from 60 per cent to 68.6 per cent of the sites in the period under review. “Our mobile network in Uganda, Zambia and Malawi now consists of 100 per cent of 4G sites.

The total data usage on our network grew by 83.8 per cent and 4G data usage almost tripled and now contributes 44.6 per cent to the total data usage. Data usage per custom- er reached 2.6GB, up by 49.1 per cent from 1.7GB per customer in the previous period.” the firm said in a statement. Its operating profits rose by 66 per cent to $184 million as well as the free cash flow which rose by 21.9 per cent to $211 million.

Airtel Africa operations in Nigeria and Francophone countries also recorded a double growth in voice revenues to $972 million from $954million. Mobile money revenues increased by 24.3 per cent to $181million while data revenues increased by 26.4 per cent to $548 mil- lion in the six months to September. Airtel Africa recorded an overall growth of 10.7 per cent to $1,825 million.

As a result of strong revenue growth and lower operating expenditures in proportion to revenue, the telecom’s operating profit for the half-year was $472million, an increase of 19.5 per cent. “We remain alert to the potential for further disruptions from a second wave of COVID-19 across Africa, and the associated actions of governments to minimise contagion. The firm is in a strong financial position to capture the opportunities in a fast-growing region that is vastly under- penetrated in terms of mobile and bank- ing services.” Said Raghunath Mandava, Chief Executive Officer at Airtel Africa. Total revenue of the London Stock Exchange-listed telecom rose by 11.2 per cent to $3,422 million.