Airtel Africa Reports $472m Operating Profit Driven by Data and Mobile Money

Airtel Africa
Courtesy Bloomberg

Airtel Africa has revealed its half yearly results for 2020, ended September 30.

The operator, which serves tens of markets in the continent, has reported growth in customer base by 12% to 116.4 million.

Airtel Africa says that its revenues jumped by 10.7% to $1,815 million, with a 14.3% growth in the second quarter.

Specifically, revenue growth in constant currency was 16.4% in H1, and 19.6% in Q2.

Accordingly, to the report, all regions reported growth: Nigeria up 20.2%, East Africa up 21.9% and Francophone Africa up 4.4%.

No specific numbers have been given for individual countries, mainly Kenya whose Airtel arm has been under the shadow of Safaricom. Airtel Kenya has since dropped its merger deal with Telkom Kenya, ‘after carefully reviewing the available options’ and ‘Telkom opting to adopt an alternative strategic direction.’ The two could have presented stronger competition to market leader Safaricom.

In the same breath, Airtel Africa says that voice revenues grew by 7%, data by 33.4% and mobile money by 30.4%.

Overall, operating profit increased by 19.5% to $472m, a 28.3% jump.

Raghunath Mandava, CEO

The first half of our fiscal year included the peak impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the countries where we operate, as lockdown measures were swiftly implemented to stem the initial spread of contagion.

In these unprecedented times, the telecoms industry has emerged as a key and essential service for these economies, allowing customers to work remotely, reduce their travels, keep them connected and allow access to affordable entertainment.

In these exceptional circumstances, in the first half, we delivered a strong set of results and as lockdown restrictions eased during Q2 our performance continued to improve with constant currency revenue growth of 19.6%, up 6.6% from the prior quarter.