Vodacom spends Sh171.4 bn in network upgrading in 2019

Friday July 19 2019


By Thecitizen Reporter, news@thecitizen.co.tz

Dar es Salaam. Vodacom Tanzania has reported that it has invested a total of Sh171.4 billion during the year ending March 2019 to advance connectivity in the country.
The investments involved increasing 4G and 4G+ coverage in major cities.
The company managing director Hisham Hendi the investment helped to improve the speed of connectivity for voice and short messages communication as well as data transactions.
“Intent investment in the network complemented by digital social media partnerships and Smartphone campaigns that resulted in an impressive 7.4 percent increase in data customers, reaching 7.9million of which, 45.2 percent are using smart phones, a growth of 12.6 per cent,” he said.
He said with advanced connectivity, Vodacom Tanzania will continue to focus on enhancing customer experience through consistent investment in the network upgrading, to cater for increased users of voice, sms and data communications.
“According to the National Bureau of Statistics, by 2030, at least 50 percent of population will be under 18 years of age and the youth dividend presents an opportunity for Vodacom to continue to invest in its network,” he said.
According to Vodacom preliminary results for the financial year ended March 31st 2019, growth in services has maintained the company’s pole position as the number one mobile and financial services operator in Tanzania with 14.1 million customers.
However, the report shows that the company earning per share declined by 51.9 percent to Sh40.28 as a result of the accounting gain on the sale of equity stake in helios Towers last year.
According to the company MD, the share-based payments that were recognized in the prior year and a one-off penalty, earning per share grew 21.4 per cent.
During the year, the company collected over Sh1 trillion in services revenue equivalent to 5.4 per cent growth driven by strong growth in mobile money transactions, data and messaging.
M-Pesa continues to foster financial inclusion through innovations such as “Lipa kwa M-pesa” that simplifies customer’s payments and empower millions of Tanzanians to earn a living.
During the year, the platform opened up opportunities for 620,000 new customers recording a healthy 9.7 growth in customers using the service.
“M-Pesa revenue grew 14.5 per cent to Sh333.5 billion while leadership in mobile money grew to 38.6 per cent reaching 7 million M-Pesa users transacting over 4.1 trillion monthly.
The M-pesa platform has recorded tremendous growth with 11,000 active merchants that affected 1.1 trillion in transactions during the year, a growth of 186 per cent.
The company’s data revenue increased to Sh167 billion, a 17.9 per cent growth, while proactive measures to stabilize voice revenue decline are proving to be successful, he noted.
“The growth in data revenue is promising however in order to advance the contribution of the sector to the country’s GDP and the overall health of the industry, it is important that the industry addresses data pricing seeing that current data rates are below cost,” Mr Hendi said.
Meanwhile, he said Tanzania’s data prices are among the lowest in Africa; this hinders the company’s ability to reinvest in infrastructure and technology to advance connectivity to Tanzanians.