Resilient MTN reports strong 2020 results, unveils Ambition 2025 strategy

MTN Group today reported a very strong set of operational and financial results for 2020, displaying business resilience under COVID-19 pressures and a challenging macroeconomic environment. Africa’s leading mobile operator also announced its re-positioned strategy – Ambition 2025 – to accelerate growth and unlock the value of its infrastructure assets and platforms.

The Group added 29 million subscribers in the year, to reach a total of 280 million across 21 markets. It reported a 52% increase in adjusted headline earnings per share, a four-percentage point increase in return on equity to 17% and a more than doubling in operating cashflow to R28,3 billion.

“We continued to perform favourably against our medium-term targets,” said President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita. “In constant currency terms, service revenue grew 11,9% to R170 billion and EBITDA increased by 13,4%, maintaining our strong operating leverage. The Group’s EBITDA margin improved by 0,9pp to 42,7%, benefiting from the execution of our expense efficiency programme.”

 The solid results were supported by pleasing growth in MTN’s larger operations as well as a broad-based improvement across all regions.

The Group continued to prioritise the health and safety of its people and mourned the loss of 10 MTN employees to COVID-19, after reporting a total of 1 404 infections in the period to the end of February 2021.

“We are pleased to have made a $25 million donation in support of the African Union’s programme to secure much-needed COVID-19 vaccines,” said Ralph. “This partnership deepens MTN’s role in the ongoing work to save lives in the markets in which we operate. Importantly, it aligns with our ambition to create shared value and ensure the continent’s future progress and prosperity.”

As well as managing the risks of COVID-19, the Group remains alive to the opportunities presented by the pandemic, particularly the accelerated need for digitalisation evidenced in the greater adoption and usage of MTN services. In 2020, MTN added 19 million data users and almost 12 million MoMo users, to reach totals of over 114 million and 46 million respectively. The Group’s networks remained well-invested, with capex of R28,6 billion in 2020 and headroom to accommodate growth of more than 110% in data traffic in the year.

In the near-term, MTN is focused on de-leveraging the holding company and it reduced net debt by R12 billion, to R43 billion. The leverage ratio for the year, however, remained flat at 2,2x as cash upstreaming from Nigeria remained challenged. MTN concluded R4,3 billion of realisations of its asset realisation programme (ARP) and remains focused on completing some of its larger transactions, which did not proceed in the year due to challenging market conditions.

In this regard, MTN suspended the final dividend for 2020 due its near-term focus on faster de-leveraging of its holding company as well as three conditions which negatively impacted this objective. These related to uncertainties around cash upstreaming from Nigeria, the timing of ARP proceeds and COVID-19 impacts.

In light of these material uncertainties, the Board has also suspended the dividend policy and anticipates communicating a revised medium-term dividend policy when we announce our 2021 results in March 2022,” said Ralph.

During this transition, the Board anticipates paying a total ordinary dividend of at least 260 cents per share for the 2021 financial year. Ralph added, “on assessment of the progress of cash upstreaming from Nigeria, ARP delivery and COVID-19 impacts, the Board will consider returning further cash to shareholders in the form of special dividends or share repurchases after the release of 2021 results.”

MTN also announced a revised strategy. “Further to our previous announcement regarding our intention to focus on our pan-Africa strategy, we completed a comprehensive strategy review in Q4 2020 and are excited to introduce ‘Ambition 2025’,” he said. “As part of this strategic repositioning, we are looking to structurally separate our infrastructure assets and platforms, such as fintech, to reveal value and attract third-party capital and partnerships into these businesses, over the medium-term.”

“Going forward, we believe that Ambition 2025 will position the business to capture the exciting opportunities across our markets and our medium-term guidance has been enhanced to reflect this accelerating growth outlook. To support this, we plan to invest approximately R29,1 billion in our network, fintech and digital services platforms in 2021.”

MTN Group appoints new executive to drive its strategic repositioning

MTN Group today announced the appointment of Chika Ekeji as Executive: Strategy and Transformation as part of plans to further bolster management capacity to accelerate the Group’s strategic ambitions.

Effective 15 March 2021, Chika joins Africa’s leading mobile operator from management consultancy McKinsey & Company in Nigeria, where he led the West Africa Digital Practice and served telco, financial services, and public sector clients across Africa.

“We are very pleased that Chika is joining us as we work to accelerate our strategic repositioning,” said MTN Group Chief Operating Officer Jens Schulte-Bockum.

A Nigerian-American national, Chika has a Masters of Engineering in Computer Science from Cornell University and an MBA from MIT. In his new role he will be based in South Africa.

In December 2020, MTN Group announced the completion of a comprehensive strategy review with a focus on accelerating growth, deleveraging the holding company debt and unlocking value.

To support the execution of the repositioned strategy, we announced the appointment of a new Group Chief Financial Officer as well as changes to the Group’s regional structure and the Group Executive Committee.

The revised strategy will be presented in more detail after the release of 2020 full-year results on 10 March.

Mastercard and MTN empower millions of consumers in Africa to make payments on global platforms

  • Partnership will enable millions of MTN customers to pay on global online platforms with a Mastercard virtual payment solution linked to MTN MoMo wallet
  • Mastercard’s technology will enable new digital commerce opportunities for consumers and merchants with or without a bank account, through a simple and secure payment experience
  • Collaboration underpins a new wave of financial inclusion through mobile devices, unlocking opportunities for millions of people across Africa

Mastercard and MTN today announced a strategic partnership to enable millions of consumers in 16 countries across Africa to make global e-commerce payments safely and securely.

Through a Mastercard virtual payment solution linked to MTN MoMo (Mobile Money) wallets, consumers and merchants can engage with brands and businesses abroad through digital commerce, extending their reach to an international marketplace and unlocking a host of opportunities.

Across Sub-Saharan Africa, mobile devices are the primary channel used to connect to the internet. According to GSMA, by 2025, it is estimated that there will be 300 million more people using their devices to access internet services. In light of this significant growth, mobile financial services have become the dominant form of digital payments, with twice as many mobile money accounts as bank accounts in the region. As a result,  consumers increasingly expect to have access to a broader range of digital financial services.

However, consumers and merchants are mostly restricted to a local base of online and offline businesses, therefore curtailing customers’ ability to engage in global commerce. Through this strategic partnership, MTN customers with a Mastercard virtual payment solution linked to their MoMo wallets can make payments to global online merchants through a seamless and secure digital payment experience on websites and mobile applications. The service is available regardless of whether or not the customer has a bank account.

The solution will enable consumers to explore and shop at well-known global e-commerce brands and pay quickly and securely for leisure shopping, travel, accommodation, entertainment, streaming services and more. It will also allow small business owners to purchase from suppliers abroad and pay with the virtual payment solution.

“We are very excited about this partnership with Mastercard, which is another step in realizing our ambition to build Africa’s largest fintech platform, accelerating economic and social development through digital innovation to the benefit of citizens across the continent and beyond,” said MTN Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer Serigne Dioum.

“This noteworthy partnership is another step to enable our customers to participate in the global economy. We are resolute that accelerated financial inclusion is a potent enabler of socio-economic development that empowers the most vulnerable in society,” he concluded.

 Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President for Market Development, Mastercard Middle East and Africa, said: “This significant milestone will enable millions of MTN customers to benefit from global digital commerce and drive digital and financial inclusion across Africa through easy and secure access to financial services.

“At Mastercard, our innovation strategy is based on partnerships and collaboration. This agreement with MTN shows that we can deliver innovative digital solutions that have a far-reaching impact and realize the true potential of inclusive growth across the continent. Partnering with MTN allows us to accelerate our global pledge to connect 1 billion people to the digital economy by 2025, bringing us closer to a world beyond cash.”

MTN and Mastercard first launched the digital payment solution in 2018 for MoMo customers. MTN, the largest mobile network operator, is the ‘Most Admired African Brand’ based on spontaneous consumer responses in Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands 2020 survey and the most valuable telecoms brand in Africa by Brand Finance Africa.

The company will extend the virtual payment solution offering throughout its Fintech footprint. The expansion of this payment solution will play a significant role in driving the growth of digital inclusion and e-commerce thus increasing MTN MoMo customer inclusion into the global economy.

Initially designed to facilitate the transfer of cash between mobile users, MTN’s MoMo offering is now much broader – including loans, insurance, remittances and payments.

MTN commits to net zero emissions by 2040 to contribute to a sustainable future

As the impacts of climate change become increasingly visible around the world, MTN believes in the benefits of a healthy planet and has pledged its commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2040.

With global warming on the rise and impacting countries, communities and people everywhere, MTN has set science-based targets to achieve a 47% average reduction in absolute emissions (tCO2e) for scope 1, 2 and 3 by 2030.

“As we build and operate the telecommunications infrastructure to drive greater digital and financial inclusion, we believe that our growth and success should not come at the expense of the future of our planet,” says MTN Group President and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Mupita. “We must keep addressing the needs and challenges of society, which include playing our part in mitigating the effects of climate change.

GHG emission-reduction target-setting, like that adopted by MTN, is in line with an ICT sectoral target-setting approach recently developed through a collaboration between the Global Enabling Sustainability Initiative (GeSI), the GSM Association (GSMA), the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). These targets support the Paris Agreement’s central aim of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change.

To realise its targets, MTN has launched its Project Zero programme to leverage the latest technologies and service partners to enable business sustainability via greater energy efficiencies, low carbon emissions, risk reduction and cost control. The programme prioritises renewable solutions, efficient emerging technologies and energy storage.

 “We believe ICT companies and mobile operators have the potential to significantly contribute to global decarbonisation efforts,” says MTN Group Chief Technology and Information Systems Officer Charles Molapisi. “We are pleased that Project Zero is in full swing, actively driving energy efficiency and carbon emission sustainability.”

The GSMA supports the science position on climate change realities and emissions limits set by the Paris Agreement. MTN is a member of the GSMA’s Climate Action Taskforce driving the mobile industry-wide plan to back the Race to Net Zero. The aim is to ensure a resilient, zero-carbon future that leaves no one behind.

 We are excited about this next chapter in the MTN story and we recognise that we need to run and operate our business with sustainability at the core.  We have a role to play in Africa and the Middle East to contribute meaningfully on much-needed actions to mitigate the impact of climate change, that’s why we are committed to achieve net-zero emissions by no later than the end of 2040,” concludes Mupita.

Because transparency and disclosure are critical in MTN’s response, we participate in the Carbon Disclosure Project in alignment with the Taskforce Recommendations on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.

MTN Group drives future-fit workforce solution to match rapid digital change

MTN Group has unveiled its a new Employee Value Proposition (EVP) entitled “Live Inspired” to drive agility, flexibility and future fit skills for its workforce.

Learning the lessons of the challenges brought about by COVID-19, MTN has adopted a refreshed, organisation-wide approach, which involves a move away from older, conventional ways of working and into the ‘new normal’ with confidence and optimism.

“For us, it’s really about the power of choice, we recognise that what our staff values is motivated by choices and flexibility. It is for this reason that our EVP is designed to cater to the various personas and preferences that inspires and helps people realize their true potential,” says Paul Norman, MTN Group Chief Human Resources Officer.

MTN has entrenched smart-working through principles such as anytime work, anywhere workplace and balanced work-life. Our programmes capitalize on the organic movement towards a digital-adopter mindset and flexi-workforce.

“As technology moves forward and our business converges, we need to do the same with our capabilities. Having the best talent is as important as having the best network,” Norman adds.

Talent convergence in line with the rapid pace of technological change is the way of the future, driving digital learning consumption growth indicating a natural shift towards upskilling and re-skilling. MTN’s digital aspirations is geared towards accelerating the creation of future capabilities, empowerment and agility at scale.

The EVP will support our reputation for innovation, customer-centricity and being a company that is driven by people who bring personal commitment and a range of skills and experience together for the benefit of our customers,” says Norman.

He says real growth is inspired by a purpose that advances individuals and impacts on organisations and communities. We aim to enable opportunities for individuals to be innovative, acquire skills and meaningfully impact on our customers.

MTN’s focus will be to create an inspiring environment for everyone to ‘activate one’s whole self’. This will be powered by genuine inclusion, respect for diversity, fair rewards, true recognition and personal flexibility to contribute most productively.

MTN partners with African Union on COVID-19 vaccinations

In a unique public/private partnership, MTN, Africa’s leading mobile network, has announced a donation of US$25 million to support the African Union’s COVID-19 vaccination programme.

The donation will help secure up to seven million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for health workers across the continent, which will contribute to the vaccination initiative of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC).

The devastating impact of COVID-19has been unprecedented and profound.  Public and private partnerships are needed if we are to succeed in the fight against the pandemic and restore social and economic norms for our continent and our communities,” says Ralph Mupita, President and Chief Executive Officer of MTN Group.

On 14 January 2021, President Cyril Ramaphosa, Chairperson of the African Union, announced that the African Union had secured a provisional 270 million COVID-19 vaccine doses on behalf of its Member States, through advance procurement commitment guarantees of up to US$2 billion to the manufacturers by the African Export-Import Bank.

This was an important milestone in efforts to ensure equitable access to the COVID-19 vaccine for Africa’s people. However, with a population of about 1.3 billion, Africa requires many more doses to achieve at least 60 percent herd immunity. Contributions by private organisations, like MTN, are therefore essential to help the continent reach its target.

Our goal is to ensure that all those who need the COVID-19 vaccine have access to it very quickly, but the biggest hurdle in Africa has been financing of the vaccines, and the logistics of vaccinating at scale. We therefore welcome the right partnerships, like the one with MTN, to achieve our minimum 60 percent vaccination target,” says Dr John Nkengasong, Director of Africa CDC.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, MTN has made significant contributions to help limit the spread of the disease and save lives and livelihoods within its African market.

This donation is another example of MTN’s efforts to help find lasting solutions to solve the challenges facing the continent and to guarantee a healthy Africa, for all Africans.

We believe ongoing collaborations with key stakeholders across sectors are essential as vaccines are deployed in all our markets, with communication tools, technology and digital services being vital support infrastructure for a successful mass vaccination programme,” concludes Mupita. “In the coming months, MTN Group will look at similar support commitments for the markets in which we operate in the Middle East.”

African messaging app ayoba assures users of privacy and security protection and content suitable for younger users

As people everywhere ramp up their usage of instant messaging, more and more are choosing ayoba. MTN Group is proud to partner with this unique instant messaging platform localised for the needs of consumers across Africa.

Launched in 2019 to improve access to affordable communications, ayoba is active in 17 MTN markets, and is also available to download onto Android smartphones in numerous other markets from Google Play and via the ayoba website www.ayoba.me as an over-the-top (OTT) offering.

Ayoba is focused on protecting users’ privacy and security:  it is not possible for messages in the app to be read by anyone else or to be shared with any third parties, including MTN. The app features peer-to-peer private messaging which is end-to-end encrypted; ayoba treats data with the utmost care and respect in line with its privacy policy.

All the content available on ayoba channels is curated and reviewed to ensure that its 100% family friendly and safe for younger users. A team of editors checks every post on ayoba content channels before it goes live across over 100 content channels and 120 games.

Ayoba has also recently launched an in-app assistant, Aya, to guide new users on how to use the instant messaging app. Aya appears automatically in the app and can run a variety of interactive tutorials for key features within ayoba.

Ayoba users can send and receive encrypted messages, share photos, videos, files, voice notes and even their location, and can also subscribe to live channels. Localised content is available through these channels that aim to entertain, educate and empower communities.

Since 2020, as COVID-19 spread across the world, ayoba’s daily lifeline data allocations on MTN’s networks in most markets allowed users free connections with family and provided them with zero-rated access to credible information through special COVID-19 channels.

10 REASONS TO USE AYOBA:

  1. FREE TO USE: ayoba is free to use. You need data to send messages and files to your contacts, but if you are on the MTN network, you will get free data every day to use the app.
  2. CHAT NOW: Instantly send and receive text and voice messages with any of your contacts.
  3. SECURE: End-to-end encryption means that messages in a conversation cannot be read by anyone else.
  4. QUICK CONNECT: Use your existing address book to quickly and easily connect you with your contacts.
  5. CHAT WITH EVERYONE: Send SMS text messages with anyone in your contact list, regardless of whether they’ve installed ayoba or not.  If the contact to whom you send a message does not have the app, the message will be delivered by SMS.  That contact can then respond by SMS and the response will come back into your app.  This is a unique technology.
  6. GROUP CHAT: The more the merrier. Set up group chats to easily communicate with friends and family in a single chat.
  7. SHARING IS CARING: Share videos, images, audio, and other files with your contacts.
  8. LET’S MEET: Share your real-time location with your ayoba contacts.
  9. CHANNELS: Consume all content across various categories ranging from news, sports, music to entertainment and much more, all within the ayoba app.  We have over 30 content channels live in Nigeria including Pulse for entertainment and the MTN YelloStar competition.
  10. LISTEN AND PLAY: We have a free music service in the app so you can listen to trending songs on our fantastic playlists.  We also have games that you can play, such as BattleShip, Pinball, Solitaire and more.  New content is added every day.

The app supports over 20 local languages spoken across MTN’s markets, including isiZulu, isiXhosa, Pidgin, Yoruba, Swahili, Hausa, French, Arabic, Portuguese, and English. At the end of June 2020, ayoba had two million active users.

In November 2020, ayoba was named the ‘Best Mobile App of the Year’ at the Africa Digital Awards 2020, acknowledging Africa’s first super-app, which offers users free instant messaging, mobile commerce and interactive entertainment.

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.

Further reading