MTN South Africa – Increase in revenue, but drop in subscribers

MTN has released its consolidated financial results for the 6 months ended 30 June 2019.

The results show that MTN South Africa has increased its revenue across several categories, but experienced a decrease in subscriber numbers.

Key highlights from the results for the local unit were:

  • Service revenue increased by 3.3%
  • Data revenue increased by 5.6%
  • Fintech revenue increased by 21.6%
  • Digital revenue decreased by 34.5%
  • EBITDA increased by 0.2% to R7.4 billion

It is interesting to note that MTN SA decreased its capex by 13.8%, though, following a strong drive to strengthen its network in the country.

MTN said its South African network investments continue to deliver network leadership endorsements from subscribers and industry bodies such as MyBroadband and Ookla.


MTN stated that growth in wholesale and consumer postpaid revenue “supported service revenue growth, but was offset by a 5.5% reduction in prepaid service revenue coupled by the Cell C adjustments made”.

“The prepaid business negatively impacted service revenue growth mainly as a result of the implementation of ICASA’s End User Subscriber Service Charter regulations and the reduction of out-of-bundle tariffs,” said MTN.

MTN SA’s consumer postpaid business delivered a 7% service revenue growth, however.

Subscriber decline

It was not good news on the subscriber front, however, with MTN SA losing subscribers in the period.

“A combination of changes in the acquisition strategy in consumer postpaid as well as the discontinuation of the 1GB acquisition promotion in prepaid… resulted in a 1.9 million decrease in the subscriber base from December 2018 – to a closing subscriber base of 29.2 million.”

MTN SA said it has also increased the distribution of 3G and 4G devices by 22% in the market.

Now read: Cell C expands roaming agreement with MTN

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MTN South Africa – Increase in revenue, but drop in subscribers