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44m MTN subscribers submit NINs as telco targets 2000 cities for rural telephony

By Adeyemi Adepetun
02 February 2022   |   4:04 am
Telecommunications operator, MTN has disclosed that about 44 million of its 68.5 million subscribers in Nigeria have submitted their National Identification Number (NIN), which was to be linked with their Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards as of December 31, 2021. MTN in its audited result for the financial year ended December 31, 2021, said the…

Photographer: George Osodi/Bloomberg

Telecommunications operator, MTN has disclosed that about 44 million of its 68.5 million subscribers in Nigeria have submitted their National Identification Number (NIN), which was to be linked with their Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) cards as of December 31, 2021.

MTN in its audited result for the financial year ended December 31, 2021, said the 44 million represented about 64 per cent of its subscriber base and 74 per cent of service revenue.

MTN Chief Executive Officer, Karl Toriola said the firm is actively supporting the Federal Government’s NIN enrolment programme, having deployed more than 2,300 points of enrolment across the country.

Emphasising that the current deadline for NIN verification is March 31, 2022, Toriola said, “while an extension is solely in the hands of the authorities, we are working constructively with them and the industry, supporting the NIN enrolment drive, to ensure that customers are not unduly inconvenienced and service revenue for 2022 is not impacted.”

As part of its expansion plans, MTN, according to Toriola, would connect approximately 2,000 new communities in 2022 in the country through its rural connectivity programme and CVM initiatives.

“We are seeing structurally sustained data growth. As a result, we are investing in network and information technology infrastructure, and have secured the relevant frequencies to meet the higher demand. This involves accelerating the expansion of our 4G coverage and providing home broadband to capture a significant share of market growth.

We will commence the initial rollout of 5G services once the acquisition process is completed to further deepen broadband penetration in Nigeria, enhance customer experience and unlock new revenue streams,” he added.

The MTN CEO stressed that the firm has made significant progress with its super-agent licence, expanding the agent network across the country. He however said as the business transits to MoMo PSB once the final approval is obtained, MTN will remain focused on developing the range of additional services we can offer customers to drive digital and financial inclusion.

Toriola said the telecoms firm will sustain the drive for cost management across the business through its expense efficiency programme and strengthen operations and financial position to unlock efficiency and support margins.

He said although the availability of foreign exchange remains a constraint, “we strive to minimise its impact on the business.

“In line with the accelerated growth we are seeing, we expect service revenue growth of “at least 20 per cent” over the medium term. In delivering on the service revenue growth guidance, we will continue to focus on CAPEX efficiencies, margin expansion, operating cash flow growth and improving returns to shareholders.”