MTN to List On the NSE Before End of H1, 2019


Wednesday, March 14, 2019    7:30PM / By Glory Okutue/Proshare research


MTN Nigeria is likely to list on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) before the end of H1 2019. Speaking to journalists at an interactive session in Lagos yesterday, the telco’s managing director, Ferdy Moolman, noted that the company would be coming to the floor of the Exchange in a two-pronged strategy. According to Moolman, “we will list by way of introduction in the first phase of our listing programme, and this will happen before the end of the first half of the year, but we will pursue full listing in due course as part of our second phase”.

Moolman noted that, “ we are very keen on listing on the local Exchange, and unknown to many, we already have twenty percent (20%) of the shares of the company in the hands of Nigerians which trade freely in an over the counter (OTC)  private arrangement”. 

MTN Nigeria’s results for 2018 were impressive.


  • Service revenue grew by 17.2%
  • Voice revenue grew by 18.7%
  • Data revenue increased by 39.3%
  • Fintech revenue increased by 32.7%
  • Digital revenue contracted by 58.1%
  • Expenses increased by 12.3%
  • Data traffic increased by 56.3%
  • EBITDA grew by 30.8% to 453.1 billion (excluding the payment to CBN)
  • EBITDA margin grew by 4.6p.p to 43.6% (excluding the payment to CBN)
  • CAPEX intensity decreased by 7.4p.p to 17.4%
  • Total subscribers increased by 5.9 million to 58.2 million
  • Active data users increased by 4.5million to 18.7 million

Business Drivers

MTN Nigeria recorded significant improvements in its financial performance which can be traced to the growth in the company’s voice and data revenue.

Voice revenue increased by 18.7% to N783.1 billion and made a significant contribution of 76% to the total revenue. Voice subscribers base increased by 5.9 million to stand at 58.2 million total subscribers.

Data revenue came in second with a 15% contribution to the total service revenue. The active data users in 2018 grew by 4.5 million to 18.7million users thereby boosting data revenue growth to N150.7 billion which is about 39% increase from last year value.

Digital revenue contracted by 58.1% to N26.6 billion and this can be attributed to the company’s further optimization of its VAS business. Fintech revenue; xtratime and MOMO inclusive increased by 32.7% to N28.6 billion.

Digital and Fintech revenue each contributed 3% to the company’s total service revenue while other sources contributed 3%.


Financial Performance


Other revenue sources recorded the highest revenue growth of about 51.9% from N31, 607 million naira in 2017 to N48,004 million naira to 2018. Data revenue had a revenue growth of about 39.3% to N150,658 million naira as against N108,132 million recorded in 2017. Fintech revenue came in third place with a revenue growth of 32.7% from N21,540 million toN28,588 million while voice revenue grew by 18.7% from N659,760 million to N783,059 million. Digital revenue however performed poorly with a revenue contraction of 58.1% diving to N26,608 million in 2018 from N 63,451 million in 2017.


Nevertheless, voice revenue made the highest contribution of about 76% to the total revenue compared to data revenue contribution of 15% which contradicts the trend recorded in other country. This is likely due to the higher number of voice subscriber base (58.2 million) when compared to the active data users (18.7 million users) and the low data tariff in Nigeria.


The service revenue however recorded 17.2% growth from N884, 490 million in 2017 to N1, 036,917 million in 2018


Table 1 MTN Nigeria Revenue 2017-2018


2017 (N'mn)

2018 (N'mn)

% change

Other Revenue




Data Revenue




Fintech Revenue




Voice Revenue




Digital Revenue




Total Service Revenue






Chart 1 MTN Nigeria Revenues over Business Segments

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Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018


Operating Expenses increased by 14.7% from N356,063 million in 2017 to N408,507 million in 2018 while cost of sales grew by 7.6% to 198,935 million compared to its preceding year value of N184,860 million. The total expenses for the year stood at N607,442 million which indicates a 12.3% growth in total expenses.


Table 2 MTN Nigeria Expenses 2017-2018


2017 (N'mn)

2018 (N'mn)

% change





Cost of Sales








Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018



Chart 2 MTN Nigeria Expenses 2017-2018

Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.

Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018 


The company recorded a massive improvement of 121.6% in its AFCF from N 121,376 million in 2017 to N268,913 million in 2018 figure (excluding the payment made to CBN). Capex recorded 18.2% slump from N225,019 million in 2017 to N184,173 million in 2018. The company’s EBITDA aided by AFCF growth increased by 30.8% from N346,395 million recorded in 2017 to N453,086 in 2018 (excluding CBN payment).


Table 3 MTN Free Cash Flow and CAPEX 2017-2018


2017 (N'mn)

2018 (N'mn)

2018* (N'mn)

















*EBITDA excludes the impact of CBN resolution (19.2bn)

Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018 


Chart 3 MTN Nigeria Free Cash Flow 2017-2018


Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.

Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018 


Capex to total revenue ratio (Capex intensity) dived to 17.4% from 24.8% recorded in 2017 while EBITDA margin (excluding CBN payment) gained 4.6pp to stand at 43.6% in 2018 as again 39.0% recorded in 2017.

Table 4 MTN Nigeria’s CAPEX Intensity 2017-2018


2017 (%)

2018 (%)

2018* (%)

Capex Intensity




EBITDA margin




Capex intensity = Capex/Total revenue

Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018 


Chart 3 MTN Nigeria CAPEX Intensity 2017-2018

Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.

Source: MTN Nigeria Annual Accounts 2018


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