Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) revenue for the third quarter 2017 jumped 21.1% to $224.8 mln compared to $185.6 mln in the Second quarter at the back of increased internet and data usage and uptake of mobile money services.
According to the POTRAZ Third Quarter report, the aggregate Average Revenue per User per month increased by 10.8% to record $4.41 from $3.98 recorded in the previous quarter.
During the quarter, the contribution of voice declined 4.9% to 48.6% from 53.5% recorded in the previous quarter despite the increase in voice traffic. “This implies that the bulk of traffic was promotional while Internet and data increased contribution to total revenue by 0.3%,”said POTRAZ.
Meanwhile, mobile money services accounted for 4.9% to total revenue of MNOs, recording 18% growth from the 13.1% recorded in the previous quarter.
The sector’s total operating costs declined by 6.3% to $123.2 million from $131.5 million recorded in the previous quarter largely as a result of efforts by the mobile operators to cut down operating expenditure.
Resultantly, investment by mobile operators declined 37.2% to $31,69 mln from $50,48 mln recorded in the previous quarter.
Econet’s market share increased 3.7% to reach 81.6% from 77.9% recorded in the previous quarter while on the other hand, NetOne and Telecel`s market shares declined by 1.9% and 1.8%, respectively.
The total number of active mobile money subscriptions increased 15% to reach 3,867,676 from 3,352,476 active subscriptions recorded in the previous quarter; as a result, the mobile penetration rate increased 3.5% to reach 100.5% from 97% recorded in the previous quarter.
Econet accounted for the largest active subscribers at 7.13 mln, followed by Netone which had 4,86 mln. Telecel had 1.79 mln active subscribers.
“All mobile networks registered an increase in active subscriptions with Econet registering the highest increase of 6.9%, Netone 0.5% and Telecel 0.3%.”
During the quarter, there was an overall increase in traffic attributable to the current promotions running in the market. International outgoing traffic was the only category to register a decline in traffic volume.
“This is due to increased use of OTTs for international communication. Outbound roaming traffic experienced the highest growth and this is attributable to Econet, whose outbound roaming traffic increased by 138% due to their newly launched roaming service, Econet Plus,” read the report.