MTN Ghana Still Leads In Data and Digital Innovation

MTN Ghana CEO, Selorm Adadevoh

Accra, Ghana, September 23, 2020//-With a worldwide mobile voice market reaching a point of saturation, players in the industry are focusing on the use of mobile data (Internet services).

Still leading the charge in Ghana is MTN.  National Communications Authority’s (NCA’s) figures from January to March this year confirmed that MTN Ghana is leading the country’s mobile data market with 67.78 percent market share.

Drivers of the growth

The Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, Selorm Adadevoh in his 2019 review captured in the telecoms company’s 2019 annual report, said: “MTN Ghana leads the data market with 20.1 million subscribers as at December 2019”.

The growth in data market share according to him is largely attributable to effective market propositions, rich content and value-added services, video push and MTN’s smart device drive, lifestyle-based propositions and packages as well as partnership models within the data ecosystem.

Initiatives and impacts

TurboNet

In 2019, the company launched a revolution to bring high-speed internet to homes and to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by introducing MTN turbonet which sold over fifty thousand units and has in this short time, become the leader in high-speed home internet solutions.

“We have enhanced our offering in the Home and SME broadband segment with ~100k connected on wireless broadband in just over 12months”, Mr Adadevoh told journalists at the company’s editors’ forum held virtually in Accra.

Fibre Broadband

In its quest to expand broadband penetration to support small businesses digitization, MTN Ghana introduced the Fibre Broadband service to its offerings.

Immediately, business districts across the country including Adabraka, Ridge, and Adum were connected to the broadband service.

 It has so far connected over 27,000 buildings since 2019. This figure is expected to grow exponentially.

Also, 39 percent total enterprise segment growth of the company further contributed to the usage of data during the period under review.

Investment

“For 2020, an amount of $114.1 million is being invested into the network to facilitate the rollout of 300 LTE (4G) sites; an upgrade of 737 3G sites and 450 2G sites across the country,” Mr Adadevoh said.

The investments he explained would make significant contributions to enable individuals and businesses in both the rural and urban parts of Ghana to enjoy the best experience and also enjoy the benefits of a modern connected lifestyle.

Expanded digital portfolio

Furthermore, MTN Ghana which is a subsidiary of MTN Group has also expanded its digital portfolio by re-launching the MyMTN app to put more control into the hands of its customers as it continues on the journey to becoming a digital operator by 2023.

In addition, it launched Ayoba, an innovative messaging app that allows non-smartphone users to communicate for free with smartphone users on the app. Currently, there are over 1.3 million customers of MTN Ghana on the app.

The Ayoba app has evolved to become a super app with mobile money (MoMo) integrated and several content options and sub apps embedded.

Solid data revenue

Solid data revenue growth (up 32.5% year-on-year) was attributable to growth in active data users (+26.6%). In monetary terms, the data revenue generated by the company went up to GHC1.5 billion.

The growth in the number of smartphones on the network (+18.5%) and an increase in data usage (up 85.9% to 256,301 Terabyte), has also contributed to the revenue.

Data revenue’s contribution to service revenue expanded from 26.3% to 28.4%, the financial statement of the company noted.

Easy access to internet data

Thanks to mobile money operators namely MobileMoney Limited, a subsidiary of MTN Ghana, Vodafone Cash and AirtelTigo Money, the majority of mobile phone users are able to purchase internet data from their wallets with ease.

Additionally, the falling costs of internet devices and market competition, access to the internet has risen steadily in Ghana.

Key mobile players

As with telephony, the internet market is dominated by mobile phone usage, with 929.96 million subscriptions using mobiles to access the internet at the end of the fourth quarter of 2019, according to data released by the NCA.

This figure represents 98.75% of the market share when compared to 27.42 million recorded in the third quarter last year.

This is high by regional standards; while comparable figures for all data subscriptions are unavailable, the penetration rate of 2G and 3G subscriptions in Ghana was 88.8% in December 2018, second only to South Africa (105%) in sub-Saharan Africa, according to the NCA and GSMA Intelligence.

This shows that the country’s mobile data market is well established.

MTN Ghana is the largest operator in the mobile market, while Vodafone Ghana is the second-largest mobile operator.

Occupying the third position is AirtelTigo. The smallest operator in Ghana is Glo Mobile, a subsidiary of Nigeria’s Globacom.

Also, there are five Broadband Wireless Access operators in Ghana namely; BLU Telecommunications, Broadband Home (BBH), Busy Internet, Surfline and Telesol.

Bottom line

Mobile phone penetration rate as at December 2019 was 135.33 percent while data subscriptions for the same period stood at 92.76 percent, according to data from the NCA.

The mobile telecommunications market in Ghana is vibrant and super competitive. According to the World Bank, there is a direct relationship between growth of the internet and economic growth.

The country’s telecoms sector is one of the biggest contributors to Growth Domestic Product (GDP) and employs several of the skilled youth. It also created many business opportunities for thousands of Ghanaians.

By Masahudu Ankiilu Kunateh, African Eye Report

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