MTN has faced significant challenges over the past year, but if industry speculation is correct, the company is getting ready to launch an aggressive fightback.
MTN’s latest results show that its South African subscriber numbers dropped by 2.6% to 29.8 million over the last six months.
The decline, said MTN, was a result of network outages, increased competition, and economic pressure impacting consumer spending.
MTN SA CEO Mteto Nyati said it could also not react to price cuts and promotions from its competitors, as its network was not up to scratch.
Apart from its woes in South Africa, the MTN Group grappled with numerous problems over the past year.
These problems included a massive fine in Nigeria, corporate governance issues, and management changes.
The company is now rebuilding, and has already resolved many of the problems which it faced six months ago.
MTN settled its Nigerian fine early in June, and less than two weeks later announced that Rob Shuter will become its new CEO.
MTN South Africa has also strengthened its executive team in recent months, with the appointment of a new Chief Digital Officer, Chief HR Officer, Chief Customer Experience Officer, and Chief Information Officer.
In the latest industry move, MTN appointed Telkom executive Enzo Scarcella as chief operating officer of its South African unit.
Industry players who spoke to MyBroadband said MTN has deep pockets and is using its resources to assemble a team to mount its comeback.
MTN has already allocated R12 billion to improve its network in South Africa, which is more than any of its competitors.
While it will take several years for the full results of these investments to materialise, Vodacom, Cell C, and Telkom will not be able to sit back and watch.
If MTN’s competitors do not react, they will soon be in the same position as MTN is now in the near future.