Currency woes in Nigeria hit MTN bottom-line  

MTN Group CEO Ralph Mupita cautioned currency volatility in Nigeria and elevated inflation across its markets would likely persist this year, as the company reported a sharp drop in post tax profits for 2023 on tough macroeconomic headwinds.

In the company’s annual results statement, the executive highlighted the two issues as key challenges it needed to navigate in the short term, as it continues to focus on its multi-year strategy which includes cutting costs and pushing digital platforms in Africa.

Net profit across the business fell by 83 per cent year-on-year to ZAR4 billion ($221 million). Revenue was up 6.8 per cent to ZAR221.1 billion.  

On a more positive note, during the year the operator reported continued increases in demand for data and financial technology services.

Across the group its number of active data subscribers increased 9 per cent year-on-year to surpass half of its total subscriber base. At end-December it had 150 million mobile data users out of a total of 295 million customers.

Active mobile money users stood at just over 72 million (up 5 per cent year-on-year) with the value of transactions processed by the company’s various financial technology services standing at $272 billion. Increases in this area were attributed as being “driven by growth of advanced services in payments, banktech and remittance solutions”.

Mupita added within the finance area a deal signed with Mastercard “positions the business well to scale faster and we are excited about the commercial launches of card issuance, acceptance and remittances across the footprint.”

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