Airtel Africa Q3 results: Net profit dips 21.1% to $261 million

Airtel Africa Q3 results: Net profit dips 21.1% to $261 million

NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel’s Africa operations reported net profit of $261 million for the nine month period ended December 2020, down 21.1 per cent from $331 million reported in the corresponding period previous year.

Underlying revenue grew 13.8 per cent to $2,870 million is the March-December period according to the financial results released on Friday.

Raghunath Mandava, CEO, Airtel Africa said strong growth in revenue and earnings is partly due to “our continued delivery of strong customer growth in Q3, despite the introduction mid-December of additional customer registration requirements in Nigeria.”

“This has meant a temporary halt to the ability of all operators in the country to onboard new customers. But we are working closely with the government to ensure that all our subscribers provide their valid National Identification Numbers (NINs) and update their SIM registration records, such that disruption is minimised,” he said.

Mandava added that Airtel’s rollout into rural markets, along with robust customer growth, helped voice grow 10 per cent, while data and mobile money continued to be growth engines, with over 30 per cent growth.

Airtel’s subscriber base across 14 African countries grew 11.0 per cent to 118.9 million, with increased penetration across mobile data (customer base up 23.5 per cent) and mobile money services (customer base up 29.0 per cent). 2.5 million customers were added in Q3, the company said.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) for the nine months was $1,297 million, up 22.5 per cent in constant currency.

Even as the Covid-19 pandemic has had little impact the telco’s performance, Airtel remains vigilant about the new strains of the virus and further actions by governments to minimise contagion in our countries of operation.

“The opportunities for sustainable profitable growth from our underpenetrated markets for both mobile and mobile money services remain hugely attractive, and we are confident of continuing to deliver on our growth strategy,” Mandava said.

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