MTN Rwandacell PLC (MTN Rwanda) has released its first quarter results for the period ended 31 March 2022 through the Rwanda Stock Exchange. Comparing March 2022 to March 2021, the company saw an increase in total mobile subscribers of 306,000 closing its customer base at 6.5 million and an increase in active data users of 453,000 closing the active data user base at 2.2 million. MTN Rwanda, through its subsidiary Mobile Money Rwanda Ltd (MMRL) also continued to drive financial inclusion with growth of 12.1% of Mobile Money (MoMo) users closing at 3.8 million.
MTN Rwanda’s Quarter 1 financial results were achieved on the back of a rebound in the local economy as COVID-19 restrictions were eased in the early part of the year. The company’s service revenue grew by 24.5% to Rwf 50.9 billion and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) closed at Rwf24.7 billion, representing a 15.7% increase. The Company’s key revenue stream, voice services, grew by 11.7%, while data grew by 13.8% and mobile money by 54.5%.
Mark Nkurunziza, MTN Rwanda’s Chief Finance Officer, commented on the results saying, “The financial performance for the quarter ending 31 March 2022 reflects a strong year on year growth driven primarily by voice, data, and mobile money services. Our Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) grew by 15.7% to Rwf24.7 billion, reflective of strong commercial momentum and a keen focus on cost efficiencies. Our EBITDA margin closed at 47.7%. Depreciation and amortisation increased by 59.6% and this was affected by the license renewal fee which increased amortisation costs. Net finance costs increased by 105.0% on the back of additional debt raised to support the license renewal. Both of these items resulted in a PAT decline of 39.6%, which closed at Rwf4.121 billion. Nevertheless, we remain encouraged by the top line growth and impact of our cost efficiencies program which we believe will continue to improve our margins.”
This quarter’s financial performance is a representation of a consolidated view of MTN Rwanda and its subsidiary company, Mobile Money Rwanda Ltd (MMRL). One year since the incorporation and licensing of the wholly owned subsidiary, MMRL, the fintech business is developing well, delivering a solid performance with a revenue growth of 54.5% from its leading service, Mobile Money.
Remarking on the quarterly results Mitwa Ng’ambi, MTN Rwanda Chief Executive Officer, said “We are pleased to present our 2022 Q1 results that recorded a solid performance, tracking positively against our medium-term targets of double-digit growth on service revenue, fintech revenue and EBITDA. This was delivered through solid commercial momentum and ongoing execution of our Ambition 2025 strategy despite volatile macroeconomic conditions. The Rwandan economy was fully opened from COVID-19 related restrictions in Q1, underpinning the positive commercial and financial momentum which has translated into encouraging results for MTN Rwanda.”
The company disclosed its full Q1 results through the Rwanda Stock Exchange and is expected to have a Results call on 6 May 2022. On 7 March 2022, MTN Rwanda’s Board of Directors approved for recommendation to the Shareholders at this year’s Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, to take place on 2 June 2022, a total dividend of Rwf 4.98/share, totaling approximately Rwf 6.7 billion, which represents 30% of the Profit After Tax (PAT) for 2021.
On the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives, in Q1 2022 the company continued to build on its goal to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2040, through the installation of a solar power pilot at its main data centre, an event that was officiated by Rwanda’s Minister of Environment Honourable Jeanne d’Arc Mujawamariya. Success of the pilot will see the company offloading more of its power needs into this renewable energy source through the year. Under the Social pillar of ESG, Q1 saw the recognition and financial support of twenty female-led cooperatives through the annual Connect Women in Business initiative, which was launched in conjunction with the Ministry of Gender and Family promotion.
Ng’ambi added that, “The environmental, social and governance initiatives that we have placed at the core of our operations are contributing to Rwanda’s progress and even go as far as playing a role in underpinning global commitments. Given this, we would like to thank our various partners and stakeholders that have combined their efforts with us in positively impacting the communities we serve.”
Looking ahead, the company continues to enthusiastically execute on its strategy, Ambition 2025 and will diligently manage its capital allocation with the intent to continue expansion of network capacity and coverage. 4G and smartphone penetration also remain key areas for sustained growth. Expansion in Home Connectivity through fixed wireless and fibre-to-the-home will continue and increased Mobile Money penetration is a keen area of pursuit. The company is encouraged by its first quarter’s results and pledges to continue to lead digital solutions for Rwanda’s progress.
About MTN Rwandacell Plc
MTN Rwandacell Plc (MTN Rwanda) is the market leader in mobile telecommunications in Rwanda. Since 1998, we have continuously invested in expanding and modernising our network and leading digital solutions for Rwanda’s progress. As the country’s No 1 network, we offer various services to subscribers, including innovative propositions such as personalised voice and data offers for individuals and corporates with a clear vision to lead the delivery of a bold, new digital world to our customers because we believe everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life.
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Ndabaga Y. Shumbusho