Changes to the Board of MTN Group

In compliance with paragraph 3.59 of the JSE Listings Requirements, the board of directors (“Board”) of the Company wishes to advise shareholders of the following Board changes:

  1. Nosipho Molope

The Company is pleased to announce the appointment of Nosipho Molope as an independent non-executive director of MTN Group, effective, 1 April 2021.

Nosipho holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of the Witwatersrand (BSC Med) as well as a Bachelor of Accounting Science (Hons)(CTA) from the University of South Africa and is a Chartered Accountant (SA).

She has a wealth of experience in telecommunications, packaging, agricultural and petrochemical sectors. Having been a director and chairman of the audit and risk committees in various MTN operating companies, she is well versed in the challenges and complex regulatory requirements of the markers, where MTN operates.

Nosipho currenHy serves on the boards of several MTN operating companies, including South Africa, Uganda, Rwanda, Zambia and eSwatini. In addition, she is a board member of Old Mutual Limited and South32 Coal Holdings Pty Ltd as well as the Engen Ltd.

She is commercially astute and has a deep level of technical accounting knowledge with an objective and broad-minded approach that stems from her multi-sector experience as well as her exposure to diverse cultures.

It is anticipated that Nosipho will resign from all MTN operating companies by 31 March 2021, including MTN South Africa. MTN South Africa is at an advanced stage in identifying her replacement, as audit and risk chairman.

The Chairman and the Board believe her extensive experience and knowledge of MTN is invaluable and her contribution will greatly enhance the Board’s deliberations.

  1. Noluthando Oosa

MTN is also pleased to announce the appointment of Noluthando Gosa as an independent non-executive director of MTN Group, effective, 1 April 2021.

Noluthando holds a BA (Hons) Communications from the University of Fort Hare, has completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration at Wilfrid Laurier University and has an MBA from the University of New Brunswick.

She has solid experience in telecommunications. In 1997, she was appointed as a founding member of the first independent telecommunications regulator, ICASA and was 1 of 6 Councillors tasked to set up the regulator in South Africa. Noluthando then joined Investec Bank and spent 3 years as a sell-side analyst, focusing on the telecommunications sector.

Noluthando is also an extremely experienced deal maker and businesswoman, having spearheaded numerous joint ventures and acquisitions in multiple sectors and having enjoyed considerable success as an entrepreneur. In parallel, she has served on multiple boards, including Investec Asset Management (now NinetyOne); AON SA and Broll Property Group.

Pursuant to her entrepreneurial success, she is currenHy the chief executive officer of Akhona Croup and is serving as a director on various companies where she is a shareholder. She is also a non-executive director of ArcelorMittal SA.

The Chairman and the Board believe Noluthando’ s entrepreneurial spirit and strategic ouHook will be key to the Board, in light of M TN’s growth aspirations. Her unique telecommunications experience will also bring a new perspective to the Board.

The Board wishes both Nosipho and Noluthando success in their new roles.

MTN appoints new Group CFO, announces changes to regional structure and to the Group Executive Committee

MTN announced on Friday that it has completed a comprehensive review of the Group strategy with a focus on accelerating growth, deleveraging the holding company debt and unlocking value. The revised strategy will be presented in more detail following the release of MTN’s 2020 full-year results in March 2021.

To support the Group’s strategy execution, MTN Group announced the appointment of a new Group Chief Financial Officer (GCFO) as well as changes to the Company’s regional structure and the Group Exco.

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Tsholofelo Molefe as the new GCFO. Tsholofelo (51) will take up the position as soon as practically possible in 2021, but by no later than 1 October 2021.

She is a qualified chartered accountant, CA(SA), and brings deep financial, risk and telecommunications experience. As Telkom’s GCFO since 2018, as well as its Chief Risk Officer and Deputy CFO prior to that, Tsholofelo played a key role in the strategic transformation programmes at Telkom.

Prior to working at Telkom, Tsholofelo was the Finance Director at Eskom as well as the CFO for First National Bank’s Personal Banking division. She is also a Non-executive Director on the board of Curro Holdings.

Tsholofelo will also join the Group board and take over from Sugentharan Perumal who has been acting in the position of GCFO since 1 September 2020.

“We are thrilled to have an executive of Tsholofelo’s stature join us,” said MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita. “The board is confident that she has the experience required for the position. She will play a critical role in the growth of the business and unlocking of shareholder value.”

Changes to the regional structure and the Group Exco

Effective 1 January 2021, MTN Ghana will become part of the Group’s West and Central Africa (WECA) region, a natural fit due to its geographic location in the region. From that date, MTN’s Southern and East Africa and Ghana (SEAGHA) region will be known as the Southern and East Africa (SEA) region.

Ebenezer Asante, the SEAGHA Vice President since 2017, will become the new WECA Vice President, and Yolanda Cuba, the Group’s Chief Digital and Fintech Officer, will take the helm as the SEA Vice President.

Ebenezer, 52, joined MTN in 2008 and is a highly experienced executive who has held senior positions in the Group, including CEO of MTN Ghana and CEO of MTN Rwanda. He is also a board member on a number of companies within the Group.

Yolanda, 43, joined MTN in January 2020. Prior to that she was Vodacom’s Chief Officer of Strategy and M&A and CEO of Vodafone Ghana, which saw her named telecom CEO of the year in 2018.

The SEA region is critical to MTN’s growth ambitions and presents a good opportunity for growth in mobile financial services. It also has the largest potential for further expansion. With her extensive experience in telecoms and finance, Yolanda will play a key role in driving growth and strategic progress in the region.

Serigne Dioum, Group Executive for Mobile Financial Services, will join the Exco as the Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer. Serigne, 46, joined MTN in 2009 and has an established track record in the telecoms sector, with strong experience in mobile financial services (MFS).

Before joining MTN, he held senior positions in MFS, operational marketing, value-added services and data at Orange. Serigne is highly qualified and experienced to drive digital innovation and financial inclusion as well as build and scale these platforms as part of MTN’s growth strategy.

Kholekile Ndamase, Group Executive for Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A), will assume the new Exco role of Group Chief M&A and Business Development Officer. Kholekile, 40, joined MTN in 2016 from RMB, where he led the equity-based financing business and was responsible for financing solutions and M&A execution.

Kholekile’s experience and leadership capacity is important to the group’s portfolio optimisation drive, itself key to the strategy. This includes the asset realisation programme, which aims to reduce debt, simplify the portfolio, reduce risk, improve returns and take advantage of expansion opportunities.

These executive changes follow those announced in October: Karl Toriola as CEO designate of MTN Nigeria and Ferdi Moolman’s appointment to the new exco role of Group Chief Risk Officer. Both are effective from 1 March 2021.

Commenting on the latest appointments, Group President and CEO Ralph Mupita said: “We are excited about our journey of growth and it is important to ensure that the management capacity is in place to sustain and accelerate our key strategic ambitions. Today’s appointments follow the recent management announcement we made on the 26th of October and continues the process of further deepening the skills and experience required to lead the Group’s ambitious drive into the future.

 “Not only do these appointments safeguard continuity in the growth of our leading and scale connectivity business on the African continent, but, importantly, also support the acceleration of our digital platforms, de-risking of the business and unlocking of value. I am also particularly pleased with our continued steady progress in adding to the representation of women in our senior leadership team, which underlines MTN’s strategic focus on diversity and inclusion.”

 “I look forward to the contribution of the appointed executives in driving the company forward,” he concluded.

The Group Exco will be as follows: 

  • Ralph Mupita – Group President and Chief Executive Officer
  • Tsholofelo Molefe – Group Chief Financial Officer
  • Jens Schulte-Bockum – Group Chief Operations Officer
  • Godfrey Motsa – MTN South Africa CEO
  • Karl Toriola – MTN Nigeria CEO (effective 1 March 2021)
  • Yolanda Cuba – Vice President SEA (effective 1 January 2021)
  • Ebenezer Asante – Vice President WECA (effective 1 January 2021)
  • Ismail Jaroudi – Vice President MENA
  • Serigne Dioum – Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer (effective 1 January 2021)
  • Ferdi Moolman – Group Chief Risk Officer (effective 1 March 2021)
  • Lele Modise – Group Chief Legal Counsel
  • Felleng Sekha – Group Chief Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Officer
  • Paul Norman – Group Chief Human Resources Officer
  • Charles Molapisi – Group Chief Information and Technology Officer
  • Kholekile Ndamase – Group Chief M&A and Business Development Officer (effective 1 January 2021)

MTN Group furthers financial inclusion

Driven to secure financial inclusion across its markets, MTN Group continues to grow the number of MTN Mobile Money (MoMo) users on its network, a trend that has accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

By the end of September 2020, nearly 42 million people were regularly transacting on MTN MoMo across 16 markets. This compares to 38 million active users at the end of the first half of 2020, and 35 million at the end of 2019 – ten years after MTN launched MoMo.

Initially designed to facilitate the transfer of cash between mobile users, MTN’s MoMo offering is now much broader. The group works with numerous partners to offer services including loans, insurance, remittances and MoMo Pay, enabling customers to store money in their mobile wallets with which they can then pay for goods or services at registered merchants.

Mobile money services have grown faster in Africa than anywhere else in the world. In 2020, the trend has quickened, and the value of transactions has increased, partly supported by MTN’s reduction in MoMo transaction fees in many operations to assist customers battling the impacts of the pandemic.

In the first half of 2020, for example, the value of MTN MoMo transactions was US$61,2 billion, and the group processed 11 752 MoMo transactions a minute across its markets, up 28% from 9 193 transactions a minute in 2019.

The group remains committed to leveraging its technology to enable a cashless Africa.

For more on MTN’s work to extend financial inclusion, watch CNBC Africa at 17.30 CAT on Wednesday 25 November, when Yolanda Cuba, MTN Group’s chief digital and fintech officer, unpacks our plans.

MTN GlobalConnect wins Best African Wholesale Operator award

MTN GlobalConnect is thrilled to announce that it was named the “Best African Wholesale Operator” at the prestigious Telecom Review Excellence Awards held in Dubai on Tuesday evening.

In addition, MTN GlobalConnect CEO Frédéric Schepens was presented with the “Leader Merit Award” in the category of Industry CEO of the Year for Wholesale Operators at the 14th edition of the industry publication’s awards. “

The MTN GlobalConnect team and I are humbled to win these awards,” said Frédéric. “In a year that has been challenging for everyone, the recognition fuels our mission to grow Africa by doing the work we do in infrastructure, supporting MTN’s belief that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern connected life.” Established in 2018, MTN GlobalConnect is based in Dubai and its team is made up of more than 25 nationalities.

MTN reports strong Q3 operational performance in challenging conditions

MTN Group on Friday announced a strong set of financial results for the third quarter, supported by the performance of its larger operations in South Africa, Nigeria and Ghana, and good group-wide growth in subscriber numbers despite challenging trading conditions which have taken a toll on people everywhere.

As the COVID-19 pandemic has continued to impact lives and livelihoods across our markets, the group has demonstrated strong operational execution and resilience,” said MTN Group president and chief executive officer Ralph Mupita.

To meet the increase in data and digital usage, he added that MTN had focused its investment on network capacity and resilience and modernising its IT systems, spending R16 billion in the year to the end of the third quarter.

Service revenue grew by 11,4% to more than R43 billion. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by 13,9% and the group EBITDA margin widened by 1,4 percentage points to 43,3%, in line with medium-term targets.

“We recorded solid growth in voice revenue of 3,9%, which reflects an encouraging recovery supported by the easing of lockdown restrictions,” said Mupita. “Data revenue grew by 31,9%, bolstered by increased demand for work-from-home services, digital entertainment as well as online education offerings.”

The group also reported growth of 21,0% in fintech revenue and 37,5% in digital revenue, driven by the increased adoption and usage of digital offerings.

In the quarter, MTN added 12 million subscribers to reach a total of 273 million across 21 markets, as well as adding 5,3 million active data users to 107 million. In our work to enable greater financial inclusion, we reached a significant milestone by surpassing the 40 million MTN Mobile Money (MoMo) user mark, an addition of 3,5 million in the quarter to 41,8 million at end-September.

Apart from greater adoption brought on by COVID-19, more people used MoMo because of enhancements to the functionality of the MoMo app, the large increase in registered MoMo agents, as well as the integration of MoMo into our instant messaging platform Ayoba in some of our markets,” said Mupita.

MTN South Africa performed particularly well, sustaining its turnaround, with an acceleration in its core consumer and enterprise business units. MTN Nigeria recorded a solid result with some recovery in revenue growth under difficult operating conditions, and MTN Ghana delivered another good performance.

As part of its asset realisation programme, MTN Group completed its exit from its 18,9% investment in e-commerce venture Jumia as well as the localisation of an 8% shareholding in MTN Zambia, realising net proceeds of approximately R2,3 billion and R204 million respectively.

Looking ahead, Mupita said the group remained focused on managing the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on its staff, customers, networks and the balance sheet and liquidity profile of the group.  Through its Y’ello Hope initiative, it would continue to support those stakeholders who have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic.

“Despite the relaxation of lockdown restrictions, the operating environment remains challenging and uncertain. We will continue to build on our operational and financial resilience. We have now increased our full year forecast for capital expenditure to R26 billion, to ensure that our networks provide reliable connectivity and digital services to all of our 273 million-and-growing subscriber base,” he said.

MTN announces new MTN Group chief risk officer and MTN Nigeria CEO

MTN Group on Monday announced two important new appointments: that of chief executive officer of major subsidiary MTN Nigeria Communications Plc and that of MTN Group chief risk officer, a new group executive committee (exco) position. Both are effective from 1 March 2021.

Karl Toriola, current vice president for MTN Group’s West and Central Africa (WECA) region, will take over as MTN Nigeria CEO from Ferdi Moolman, who has served MTN Nigeria with distinction in this role for the past five years. Ferdi will return to South Africa, where he will assume the new role of group chief risk officer.

Karl has a BSc Hons in Electronic and Electrical Engineering and a MSc in Communication Systems. Ferdi has a BCom and BCompt. He is a CA(SA). Both will remain members of the group’s exco.

Ferdi Moolman appointed as the new MTN Group chief risk officer

Ferdi (57) joined MTN in 2002 and has held several senior positions within the group in Nigeria and in Iran. He has spent the past five years as the CEO of MTN Nigeria and, as its CFO prior to that. During that time, significant progress has been made in stabilising the business and setting it on a sustainable growth path.

The management of enterprise-wide risk is integral to MTN’s growth strategy and Ferdi will bring extensive operational and financial experience to the role given his deep knowledge of the MTN Group, its markets and the telecoms sector. Ferdi will remain on the board of MTN Nigeria and will in due course be appointed to other material subsidiary boards given his new group responsibility.

Karl Toriola appointed as the new MTN Nigeria CEO

In his five years as VP of MTN’s WECA region, Karl has overseen the steady progress of the operating companies in the region, notably the turnaround of MTN Ivory Coast and MTN Cameroon over the past two years.

In addition, the WECA markets have made significant commercial and strategic strides, including the improvement of market share and the development of mobile financial services. The latter in particular is an important driver of the group’s medium- to long-term growth strategy.

Since joining the group in 2006, Karl (48) has also held a number of senior operational roles at MTN, including chief technical officer of MTN Nigeria and CEO of MTN Cameroon. He is also a board member on a number of companies within the group, including MTN Nigeria. Karl’s successor as VP for WECA will be announced after the group strategy review is completed by the end of November 2020.

Exemplary leadership, extensive experience

“Karl brings extensive technical and commercial experience, as well as a deep understanding of the Nigeria market to the role,” commented MTN Group President and CEO Ralph Mupita. “Karl started his MTN career in his home country at MTN Nigeria 14 years’ ago and has all the attributes necessary to lead this very important business into the future.”

 “Ferdi has been an exemplary leader of MTN Nigeria and has put the business on a sound growth platform for the future,” said Mupita. “He brings significant strategic, financial and operational experience to the new group risk role, where we want to ensure that our enterprise-wide risk management systems are continuously strengthened and remain resilient as we drive our growth strategy.”

MTN Group owns 78,8% of MTN Nigeria, which is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange and contributes around a third to the group’s service revenue.

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.