MTN gives up stake in Africa’s first unicorn, Jumia, pocketing R2.3bn

MTN mentioned in a third-quarter replace that it had additionally exited an 8 % shareholding in MTN Zambia, realising R204 million.

MTN share closed up 4.11 % at R57.79 on the JSE on Friday.

Jumia, Africa’s first unicorn, was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in April final yr. After peaking at $49.77 (about R808) inside its first week of buying and selling, the stock fell beneath its preliminary public providing worth by August, buying and selling at about $3, but it surely had recovered considerably to $17.27 on Friday.

MTN’s third-quarter outcomes have been sturdy because of the efficiency of its bigger operations in South Africa, Nigeria and Ghana, and good group-wide development in subscriber numbers regardless of difficult buying and selling circumstances.

“As the Covid-19 pandemic has continued to impact lives and livelihoods across our markets, the group has demonstrated strong operational execution and resilience,” mentioned MTN Group president and chief govt Ralph Mupita.

To meet the rise in knowledge and digital utilization, MTN had centered its funding on community capability and modernising its IT programs, spending R16bn on this in the yr to the tip of the third quarter.

Service income grew 11.4 % to greater than R43bn. Earnings earlier than curiosity, tax, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) elevated by 13.9 %, and the group’s Ebitda margin widened by 1.4 share factors to 43.3 %, in line with medium-term targets.

“We recorded solid growth in voic revenue of 3.9 percent, which reflects an encouraging recovery supported by the easing of lockdown restrictions,” mentioned Mupita.

Data income grew 31.9 %, pushed by the elevated demand for work-from-home companies, digital leisure and on-line schooling choices.

Fintech income grew 21 %, whereas digital income was up 37.5 %, pushed by the elevated adoption of digital choices.

In the quarter, MTN added 12 million subscribers to achieve a complete of 273 million subscribers throughout 21 markets.

It added 5.3 million energetic knowledge customers to 107 million.

“In our work to enable greater financial inclusion, we reached a significant milestone by surpassing the 40 million MTN Mobile Money (MoMo) user mark, an addition of 3.5 million in the quarter to 41.8m at end-September,” mentioned Mupita.

MTN South Africa has sustained its turnaround, with an acceleration in its core client and enterprise enterprise models.

MTN Nigeria recorded a stable outcome, with some recovery in income development. MTN Ghana delivered one other good efficiency.

Mupita mentioned the group remained centered on managing the affect of the Covid-19 pandemic on its workers, prospects, networks and the steadiness sheet and liquidity profile of the group.

Through its Y’ello Hope initiative, it could proceed to help stakeholders onerous hit by the pandemic.