Consistent Rise in Internet Subscriptions, Stood at 149.3m in August 2020


Thursday, October 22, 2020 / 11:09 AM / by FBNQuest Research / Header Image Credit: Marketing Evolution


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The latest data released by the NCC, the industry regulator, show that internet subscriptions stood at 149.3 million in August, representing y/y growth of 22%. The figure implies density of 75% in a population estimated at 198 million, placing Nigeria well above the African average of around 16% as indicated by McKinsey. In August there were c.2.6 million new internet subscriptions. Given that mobile internet devices require SIM cards to function, the steady m/m increase in subscriptions can be largely attributed to the ongoing work-from-home approach as well as virtual learning conducted by schools yet to resume physical classes.


The NCC data show that in June MTN Nigeria (MTNN) accounted for the largest share (43%) of total subscriptions. We noticed from the commission's data that in August the network operator experienced significant outgoing porting activity, with a loss of over 4,469 subscribers. However, its incoming porting subscriptions stood at 5,188 thereby resulting in a net gain of 719 subscriptions.


The latest earnings release by MTNN show that revenue grew by 8% y/y in Q2, mainly on the back of stellar y/y growth of c.56% in data revenue.


Among the mobile network operators, MTNN recorded a 2.5% m/m increase in internet subscriptions in August. Meanwhile, 9mobile, Airtel and Glo recorded m/m increases of 0.5%, 1.9% and 0.6% respectively in the same month.


 Internet subscriptions (% chg; m/m)


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



Broadband penetration currently stands at 43.3%. The FGN targets 76% by next year. The sector still requires significant investment in telecommunications infrastructure to drive broadband penetration and affordability, and Nigeria's digital transformation.


Based on the latest national accounts, in Q2 2020 the telecommunications sector grew by 18% y/y and contributed 14% to total GDP in the same quarter.


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