MTN counts 24.185 million subs as at the end of March

The MTN Group’s international operations recorded a total of 13.986 million subscribers - an increase of 8% since December 2005.

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By  Tawanda Chihota Published  May 16, 2006

South Africa’s MTN Group today announced that it recorded a 55% year-on-year growth in subscriber numbers in its operations to 24.185 million at the end of March 2006. This represents a 4% increase since the last reported period ended 31 December 2005. Excluding operations acquired in the previous financial period, year-on-year subscriber growth is 43%. The MTN Group’s international operations recorded a total of 13.986 million subscribers - an increase of 8% since December 2005, now accounting for 58% of the group’s subscriber base MTN Nigeria remains the biggest of the international operations, with its closing base of 9.036 million accounting for 65% of the operator’s subscribers outside of South Africa. “These figures reflect the development of the MTN Group into an increasingly diversified entity. The anticipated conclusion of our partnership with Investcom will accelerate this trend,” says MTN Group president and CEO, Phuthuma Nhleko. MTN South Africa reports 10.2 million subscribers at the end of March, with post-paid acquisitions remaining strong while the pre-paid base declined. Prior year’s ARPUs for the first quarter included the impact of annual revenue and annual average subscriber growth. The most important impact of the changed reporting basis is the decline in South African and Nigerian ARPU numbers. In line with expectations, South Africa recorded prepaid ARPU of R87 (US$13.65) and post-paid ARPU of R493. Blended ARPU reduced to R155. In line with MTN’s expectations, MTN Nigeria recorded ARPU of US$19, a 5% quarter-on-quarter reduction. When compared to the nine months ended December 31, 2005, the quarter’s ARPU dropped by US$3 or 14%. MTN’s operations in Iran are still on target to launch in August 2006, within its licence commitment.

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