MTN commits R65bn investment in Nigeria
Pan-African telecoms provider MTN Group is set to invest $3.5 billion (R65 billion) in Nigeria over the next five years.
MTN Group chairman Mcebisi Jonas revealed the company’s plans for its most lucrative market on Friday, when the telco’s executives and directors met Nigeria’s new president Bola Tinubu.
Despite operating in 19 markets, Nigeria contributes the lion’s share of MTN Group revenue. In the current reporting period, MTN Nigeria increased mobile subscribers by 9.4% to 76.7 million in the first quarter of 2023.
Active data users increased by 14.7% to 41.2 million, mobile money wallets increased by 1.2 million to 3.2 million, and service revenue increased by 20.5% to $742 million.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation grew by 17.7% to $397 million.
The MTN delegation that met Tinubu included group CEO Ralph Mupita, chairman of Nigerian operations Ernest Ndukwe, and chief executive officer Olutokun Karl Toriola.
At the meeting, at the state house in Abuja, Jonas revealed the planned multibillion-rand investment, promising to mobilise other investors with about $1.5 trillion to invest in Africa's biggest economy and the continent’s most populous nation.
In his remarks, Jonas congratulated Tinubu and welcomed the changes implemented by the new administration, promising to marshal other investors to support the government.
He said: “The message you have given us is that Nigeria is investible; and with your election, we are seeing decisive, prompt and keen interest in structural reforms.”
Since his inauguration on 29 May, Tinubu has undertaken economic reforms supporting local businesses. The changes include ending petrol subsidies and the unification of the naira’s multiple exchange rates.
On Friday, Tinubu said: “I am glad that the stock market is responding positively to the structural adjustments.”
Africa’s largest mobile network operator, MTN, has been calling for partnerships for progress across Africa. The company wants to partner for progress with nation states and twin its aspirations with those of its host countries.