MTN to splash $2.5 billion on infrastructure

MTN to splash $2.5 billion on infrastructure

South Africa’s MTN will invest approximately $2.5 billion (R30 billion) this year on growing its infrastructure in the 23 countries where it operates, the company told local reporters yesterday.

The mobile operator is allegedly looking to attract an additional 17.5 million customers, and the bulk of its investment has been allocated to South Africa and Nigeria; two of its largest markets.

Sifiso Dabengwa, CEO at MTN Group, presented the company’s financial results on Wednesday, and revenue in South Africa had dropped 3.9% as it was hit by strong competition from rivals Vodacom, Cell C and Telkom. 

MTN is expected to use the investment in South Africa on the advancement of mobile and fibre-optic networks in the country.

MTN has also raised concerns over operations in Nigeria and said in a statement: “In Nigeria some level of uncertainty remains with regards to the implications of the oil price and currency fluctuations, which may lead to slower economic growth.”

Islamic militant group Boko Haram has seized large areas of northern Nigeria, but Michael Ipoki, CEO at MTN Nigeria, said that the firm’s problems in the country are limited to three states, which contribute only about 5% of its Nigerian revenue.

“It’s really small in terms of our operations,” he said.

In June last year, MTNpledged $250 million to upgrading its network in Côte d'Ivoire, West Africa.

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