MTN Group named most valuable African brand, worth US$3,3 billion

MTN Group is pleased to announce that it has been named the most valuable African brand in the Brand Finance Africa 150 2020 ranking, which ascribes a brand value of US$3,3 billion to MTN.

Brand value is the net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market.

In its survey, Brand Finance said: “Over the last year, Africa’s largest mobile operator has celebrated solid profits and impressive subscriber growth.”

The survey assessed the impact of COVID-19 on the enterprise value of all brands in its survey, compared to their values on 1 January 2020. It categorised the telecoms sector as ‘limited impact’, which it said meant “minimal brand value loss or potential brand value growth”. This was due to the increasingly important role that mobile operators have played in keeping people connected in the time of the pandemic.

In July, Brand Finance named MTN Group the most valuable South African brand, a result of the group’s focus on improving the customer experience for subscribers, as well as uniting 19 000 employees around a shared belief, which is that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life.

MTN Group announces new CEO of MTN Liberia Lonestar Cell

MTN Group is pleased to announce the appointment of the new chief executive officer for MTN Liberia Lonestar Cell. Rahul De, the current Chief Marketing Officer of MTN Nigeria, will take the helm at the company on November 1, 2020. Rahul replaces Uche Ofodile who departed Lonestar Cell MTN in July to become the CEO of MTN Benin.

With 23 years of experience in the telco space, ranging across multiple geographies, Rahul has spent the last two decades in senior leadership roles driving growth and leading business transformation.

“I would like to congratulate Rahul on his appointment,” said MTN Group President and CEO Ralph Mupita. “Rahul is a seasoned leader renowned for driving innovative digital and FinTech advancement in our business and in the telecommunications industry.”

Expressing appreciation for Rahul’s commitment and valued service, MTN Nigeria CEO, Ferdi Moolman said, “we thank Rahul for his unwavering dedication and commitment to ensuring that MTN Nigeria remains the market leader in our industry; and congratulate him on his new role. I know that he will continue to shine bright as he moves on from our immediate Y’ello family.”

During this tenure at MTN Nigeria, Rahul spearheaded the team that is driving digital transformation in the country, from a voice and data centric organisation to one which drives a digital and fintech future.

Rahul joined MTN in 2011 as Chief Marketing Officer of MTN Ghana, a position he held for over four years before he joined MTN Nigeria in 2015 as Chief Marketing Officer. He has an MBA in International Business and a bachelor’s degree in Science.

MTN and Telecom Infra Project in partnership

MTN Group and Telecom Infra Project (TIP) have joined forces to support the evolution of MTN’s communication transport infrastructure, which will become a platform for future revenue growth and profitability.

Our partnership with TIP will drive the specific requirements of our network to meet our subscriber demands, setting us apart on our network scalability and adaptability,” says Charles Molapisi, MTN Group Chief Technology and Information Officer.

Through the partnership, communication transport capacity will be deployed to support traffic growth over the next three years. In addition, it will provide support for new services as part of the evolution of 5G and new enterprise services. It will also reduce the time to market through more focused agile service provisioning.

Through the use of open protocols and interfaces, and the ability to incorporate specific innovations focused on the performance of each network component, TIP’s open disaggregated, standard-based transport networks can help MTN move closer to its ideal transport infrastructure,” says David Hutton, TIP’s Chief Engineer.

The TIP community, which aggregates members across the whole transport network value chain, is a key tool for MTN to build its future transport infrastructure.

To achieve the objective of increasing network efficiency, MTN has identified a set of requirements named CASSI that will support its work by:

  • Convergent and congestion free: Delivering on the capacity requirements from all network access technologies, including the most demanding, like accesses to fibre, next-generation radio systems, enterprise and consumer requirements.
  • Always on: Implementing a fully automated resilient transport network, to support high availability as demanded by advanced digital services.
  • Scalable: Allowing for an easy / efficient capacity expansion, able to accommodate fast growing traffic demands at a lower cost.
  • Simplified: Making use of standardised network configurations and open protocols, to drive lower unit costs and increase capital expenditure efficiencies.
  • Intelligent: Automation of the network operations by using software to optimise network resource planning and management, achieving higher operational efficiencies by enabling use cases such as smart planning, auto provisioning, network visualisation and forecasting and network slicing among others.

MTN will work together with the TIP community in the months ahead to build transport products and network configurations addressing the company’s requirements, that could be tested and validated in TIP’s community labs and in the field, to create easy-to-use commercial solutions for the CASSI use cases.

DJ Khaled encourages people everywhere to #WearItForMe

Hip-hop star and Grammy Award-winning producer Khaled Mohamed Khaled, aka DJ Khaled, on Wednesday added his voice to MTN Group’s efforts to raise awareness about the importance of wearing masks to fight the spread of COVID-19.

“DJ Khaled and MTN want you to know that we want you to wear your mask out there; it is so important,” the rapper and social media celebrity said in a video clip posted to his 21,5 million Instagram followers. In a message he felt was vital for Africa as well as for the rest of the world, he said: “If you love yourself, you love your family…if you love the WORLD, you will wear a mask.”

Wearing face coverings remains one of the most effective measures to slow the spread of COVID-19. However, many people refuse to wear them, wear them incorrectly or still underestimate their importance.

 DJ Khaled, whose participation was enabled by his management company Roc Nation, urged everyone to get involved: “Tag somebody that you love so that they can wear their mask…I’m gonna wear mine; you gonna wear yours and we will make this world better, safer…and we are gonna come out this stronger, wiser and more powerful! MTN, DJ Khaled. One love.”

 Earlier this month, MTN Group launched its #WearItForMe campaign, encouraging customers and the public at large not to be complacent, to wear their masks to protect themselves, and to protect and respect others.

#WearItForMe runs throughout September. Spread the message, not the virus. Visit www.wearitfor.me to send a message to someone to encourage them to do the right thing.

MTN Group works to build a culture of recognition through its ‘global appreciation week’

MTN Group on Monday launched ‘global appreciation week’, encouraging employees to recognise their colleagues’ efforts – big or small – towards achieving the group’s vision, which is to lead the delivery of a bold, new digital world to our customers.

The aim is to make our 20 000 employees feel valued and connected, particularly important during COVID-19, when most employees are still working from home.

Global appreciation week is an opportunity to show MTNers what they mean to us, recognising each person’s contribution to our values and vital behaviours, as well as our company performance,” said MTN Group chief human resources officer Paul Norman.

With a new theme every day this week, MTN employees are being urged to use the internal ‘MTN Shine’ peer-to-peer social recognition platform to send and receive messages to each other.

They are encouraged to celebrate the contribution of their co-workers to making the MTN brand and customer experience brighter; to recognise their colleagues’ ability to support other team members; to shine a spotlight on our people and their spirit leadership; as well as to acknowledge everyday heroes in the group who go to extraordinary lengths to care for MTN’s communities.

“With the emerging realities of the ‘new normal’ brought on by COVID-19, we recognise the need to rethink our employee value proposition. This begins with a deep sense of gratitude for all our MTNers who have always gone above and beyond to make us who we are,” said Paul.

“While appreciation and recognition are deeply embedded in our culture, ‘global appreciation week’ is that special time of the year when MTNers across the group come together to show their appreciation, kindness and gratitude for each other. We salute our people who made all of the successes this year possible,” he added.

Procurement digitalization in a post-pandemic world

MTN’s Global Sourcing and Supply Chain (GSSC) division, in partnership with Beroe and Espresso LiVE, will be hosting a live webinar on ‘Procurement digitalization in a post-pandemic world’ on Tuesday 8 September 2020. The session will highlight the importance of investing in procurement digitalization in uncertain times, brought about as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Supply chain and sourcing management across large organisations and geographies requires absolute accuracy, agility and constant innovation in order to adapt and evolve to meet the continually changing needs of the business.

Leading the way in digital transformation within supply chain management, MTN Group’s GSSC division has developed and successfully implemented several digitalization initiatives. These digital programmes are focused on combining a high-performance blend of automation with intelligence as well as business analytics with machine learning.

“Developed entirely in-house, GeSSiCa – our artificial intelligence assistant and our decision support application (DSA) – focuses on improving business efficiency and enhancing fact-based decision making. The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled us to work remotely and rely even more on technology than ever before,” says Dirk Karl, MTN group executive for procurement and supply chain management.

“Driven by our desire to take advantage of the digital acceleration shifts and opportunities across our markets, GeSSiCa and DSA are a visual representation of digital technologies in motion,” says Karl.

We have tangible examples of robotic process automation (RPA) in a number of use cases across the business. RPA is often referred to as software robotics, which is a form of business process automation technology based on metaphorical software robots or on artificial intelligence /digital workers.

Since her introduction, GeSSiCa has been hard at work automating time-consuming, administrative and repetitive tasks inherent within supply chain management. This gives GSSC staff the opportunity to focus more on strategic procurement and making better business decisions based on accurate data.

MTN Group’s DSA manages cross-functional decision making and combinatorial negotiations in complex multi-unit tenders. DSA enables MTN to move from several million scenarios into single digits with a complete paper trail, instantly.

With GeSSiCa and DSA, MTN’s GSSC has embarked on a journey towards digital transformation, resulting in a unique blend of automation that incorporates intelligence and business analytics. The future of work is here, delivered by a bold new digital world.

To join the webinar: 8 September 2020 at 4:00-5:00 CET/ 10:00 -11:00AM EST, https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4186107257776849419.

MTN Group appoints new audit committee chair and acting GCFO

MTN today announces changes to the board of directors of MTN Group, as well as to the board of major subsidiary MTN South Africa.

After six years as an independent non-executive director of MTN Group – the last five as audit committee chairman – Christine Ramon will step down on 30 September to focus on her extended executive responsibilities.

Sindi Mabaso-Koyana will join the MTN Group board as an independent non-executive director on 1 September, assuming the chairmanship of the audit committee on 1 October.

Sindi is a chartered accountant with extensive experience in the public and private sectors, where she is held in high regard both locally and internationally. She has served as a non-executive director for numerous companies, and her current board positions include MTN Zakhele Futhi, AWCA Investment Holdings, Toyota SA and Phembani Group.

MTN Group chairman Mcebisi Jonas said: “Christine has played an invaluable role in ensuring the integrity of MTN’s corporate reporting, for which the board is grateful and wishes her well in her future endeavours. We also welcome Sindi, who the board believes to be a worthy successor in this critical role.”

Following the announcement in August of the appointment of group chief financial officer (GCFO) Ralph Mupita as the new group president and chief executive officer (GCEO) effective 1 September, outgoing GCEO Rob Shuter steps down from the board from this date. The board once again expresses its gratitude to Rob for his leadership and wishes him success in future.

The company continues with its rigorous recruitment process for the GCFO position, and in the interim the board has appointed Sugentharan Perumal as MTN Group’s acting GCFO. A chartered accountant for over 15 years, Sugen has extensive financial and accounting experience. He has served as an external auditor of MTN Group and held various key executive and board positions within the group. He is currently acting CFO of MTN South Africa and previously held the CFO position at MTN Irancell.

Finally, the group announces the appointment of Dineo Molefe as the CFO of MTN South Africa, effective 1 December 2020. Dineo is a chartered accountant and joins from T-Systems (South Africa), where she is CEO.

GCEO Ralph Mupita said: “The board is confident in the wide-ranging experience and knowledge of MTN that Sugen brings to the role. We also welcome Dineo to MTN South Africa, to which she brings a wealth of experience, having held a number of executive positions in the ICT, investment management and energy sectors. We wish both Sugen and Dineo well in their new roles.”

 

MTN steps up COVID fight with new campaign promoting mask-wearing

MTN is adding its voice to global efforts to raise awareness about the importance of wearing masks to fight the spread of COVID-19 with today’s launch of the #WearItForMe campaign across its markets.

As society navigates the “new normal” brought about by the pandemic, wearing face coverings remains one of the most effective measures to slow its spread. However, many people refuse to wear them, wear them incorrectly, or still underestimate their importance.

COVID-19 has had profound health and socioeconomic impacts across the world. We empathise and mourn the lives lost to the pandemic. And even though the outbreak appears to be slowing in Africa, now is not the time to be complacent,” says MTN’s incoming group president and CEO Ralph Mupita.

“With increasing evidence that masks can limit the spread of COVID-19, and eventually eliminate the disease if worn by 80-90% of the population, we need to do what we can to make a meaningful difference. Wearing a mask is not only about protecting oneself, but about respecting and protecting others,” says Mupita.

To help drive this behaviour, MTN is committing its September 2020 marketing resources to encourage everyone to do more to save lives. #WearItForMe is the second phase of MTN’s Y’ello Hope COVID-19 response initiative. It is a powerful call-to-action using the voices of some of the most influential people in our communities: mothers and mother-figures. They will send heartfelt messages to all the children of Africa to wear a mask and “wear it for me’’.

The campaign will build on MTN’s work carried out under Y’ello Hope to brighten lives and limit the impact of the pandemic, including through providing free data lifelines, zero-rated access to educational sites and using technology for contact tracing and information dissemination through the Africa COVID Communications and Information Platform.

Wearing a mask is, of course, not the only thing we all need to do to slow the spread of the virus: regular handwashing and strict social distancing are just as important,” concludes Mupita.

#WearItForMe will run throughout September. Visit www.wearitfor.me to send a message to someone to encourage them to do the right thing. #WearItForMe: Because when we all wear masks, we protect each other.

MTN announces the appointment of Ralph Mupita as the new group president and CEO

MTN Group today announced that the current group CFO of MTN Group, Ralph Mupita, has been appointed as the new group president and CEO with effect from 1 September 2020. Ralph has served as the MTN Group CFO since April 2017 and has played a critical role in the development and execution of the group’s strategy, capital allocation processes, financial performance as well as in the resolution of a number of complex regulatory matters.

MTN Group chairman Mr Mcebisi Jonas said: “After a rigorous and extensive search process, we are pleased to have appointed someone of Ralph’s calibre, experience and ability to fill the group president and CEO position. Ralph’s experience as the group CFO, strong knowledge of our businesses and markets, as well as successful background in financial services, M&A and emerging markets, place him in an excellent position to lead the growth and sustainability of the business going forward.”

Ralph is a graduate of the University of Cape Town with a degree in Engineering and an MBA. Prior to joining MTN Group, Ralph was the CEO of Old Mutual Emerging Markets for five years, a business that provided financial services to individuals and corporates across 19 countries in Africa, Latin America and Asia, managing over R1 trillion of customer assets under management at the time.

Commenting on his appointment, Ralph said: “Leading a business with MTN Group’s history, scale and socio-economic impact is a privilege and honour, and I look forward to working with the group board and executive committee in driving growth and unlocking value for shareholders and broader stakeholders.”

“MTN Group is well positioned to take advantage of the digital acceleration shifts and opportunities across our markets, and we are well placed to play an important and leading role in digital and financial inclusion of the African continent, working with our stakeholders and partners.

The current group president and CEO, Rob Shuter, will step down from his executive responsibilities on 31 August 2020 and will thereafter support Ralph as required until the end of his fixed-term contract early next year.

An update regarding the GCFO position will be made on or before 1 September 2020.

MTN Group and MTN Irancell confirm that there are no plans for an imminent exit by the group

MTN Group and MTN Irancell said on 10 August that there were no immediate plans for the exit of MTN from Iran and the 51.7 million customers in the republic could rely on continuing to receive the great service they have come to expect from the operator.

MTN Group, which is headquartered in South Africa, announced last week that its board of directors had decided that MTN would be best served in the future by focusing on its pan-African strategy.

As a result, it would look to dispose of its operations in the Middle East in an orderly manner over the medium term, which is over the next three to five years.

The group is in advanced talks to divest of its stake in MTN Syria. Next, it will look to reach agreement to dispose of its operations in Afghanistan and Yemen.

The close collaboration between MTN Group and MTN Irancell – in which the group has a minority 49% investment shareholding – will continue as it is, and business will be run as usual.  We would also like to assure all our stakeholders of our best attention.

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