Visible YoY Increase in Internet Subscriptions


Monday, September 24, 2018 09:28 AM/FBNQuest Research                                                                                          

The latest data released by the NCC, the industry regulator, show that internet subscriptions stood at 104.6 million in August, representing y/y growth of 14%. The figure implies density of 57% in a population estimated at 185 million, placing Nigeria well above the African average of around 16% as indicated by McKinsey.                                                                                                                  

In August there were 957,000 new internet subscriptions recorded, compared with 867,000 the previous month. The m/m increase recorded in total internet subscriptions could be loosely linked to increased patronage of dual-SIM mobile phones; sometimes both SIMs are connected to separate data packages. 

MTN accounted for the largest share (38%) of total subscriptions. Meanwhile, Globacom and 9Mobile accounted for 26% and 10% respectively. The latter recorded a m/m decrease of -1.2%. 

Since August 2017, 9mobile (formerly Etisalat) internet subscription has declined successively. It recorded 126,000 losses in August, compared with -218,000 the previous month. According to some subscribers within the network, service has slipped but remains relatively stable. 


Internet subscriptions (% chg; m/m)



Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.


Sources: Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC); FBNQuest Capital Research


Nigeria’s internet presence is heavily dependent upon mobile services, particularly in the rural areas that have some exposure to the internet. The FGN targets broadband penetration of 30% by end-2018 (from the current 22%). We understand that the FGN has approved deployment of 18,000 kilometres of fibre cable across specific states. Nigeria currently has about 38,000 kilometres of fibre (32% of total requirement). 

Huge investments in telecommunications infrastructure are required to drive broadband availability, accessibility and affordability in Nigeria. Typically, the average cost of a monthly data package is N5, 000, which accounts for 28% of the national minimum wage. 

 Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.

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