Africa’s largest telecommunication, MTN Group has bounced back to profitability with a 3.3 billion rand ($278.2 million) net income for the 12 months ended December 2017.
The company’s total revenue surged by 11.4% within the year, and it was mainly driven by strong data growth. On a year-on-year, the revenue from data increased by 86.6% while digital revenue went down by 3.5%.
Nigerian market also played a key role in the positive results for the year. MTN Nigeria accounted for 27.2% of the group’s revenue 2017 and the telecos largest market. Also, there are currently 52.3 million MTN subscribers in Nigeria as at December 2017.
The company also stated that there is progress on its listing on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). This is one the settlement terms agreed to before the $5.1 billion fine by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in 2015 was reduced to $1 billion.
MTN Nigeria was fined $5.1 billion by NCC for failing to disconnect improperly registered sim cards. This action greatly affected the company’s finances in 2015 and 2016. However, the 2017 financial results showed the company has actually addressed the situation.
Headline earnings per share (HEPS) were put at 182 cents in 2017 compared to a 77 cents headline loss per share in 2016. The board has also declared a final dividend of 450 cents per share for the period under review.