Money News – In Brief

Mergers, Acquisitions and Financial Results

- Gabon Telecom, part of the Maroc Telecom group, has reported that its total wireless, internet and wireline revenues grew by 28% year-on-year in the first nine months of 2012 to MAD958 million (USD111.2million). Driving the growth was a 76.5% rise in its cellular subsidiary Libertis’ mobile user base which reached 804,000 at the end of September 2012, thanks to network coverage expansion and a marketing drive.

- Econet Wireless Zimbabwe has revealed that its revenue for the six months ending 31 August grew 17% year-on-year to reach USD339.5 million. However, operating costs increased 16% to USD186 million with the company citing electricity supply problems as a major challenge during the period under review; approximately 50% of its base stations have had to use generators. The cellco’s subscriber base climbed 24% during the six-month period, standing at 7.05 million at 31 August and equivalent to a subscriber market share of more than 70%. The company also announced that of the USD307 million it raised from financial institutions, USD255 million was used to refinance existing facilities with the remainder spent on network expansion.

-Pan-African mobile operator MTN Group has reported ‘satisfactory’ results for the three months ended 30 September 2012, underpinned by solid net subscriber gains – up 3.8% year-on-year to 182.7 million – driven in particular by growth in South Africa and Nigeria, two of its biggest markets. In its home market, it reported 4.1% y-o-y growth to 24.498 million, boosted by strong pre-paid user take-up, while in Nigeria it said customer numbers increased by 5.7% (on a net basis) to 45.640 million. In the wake of the strong performance, the Johannesburg-based carrier raised its guidance for net additions in the full year from 21.25 million to 23.70 million. MTN is active in a total of 22 African and Middle Eastern markets.