Safaricom’s half year profit hit sh 26.2Bn. The telecommunication company’s M-Pesa and data continue to be the engines of growth showing further progress during the first half of the year while the traditional telco business continued to record single digit growth.
Service revenue grew by 12.0% to Kshs 109.73bn driven predominantly by growth in active users and increased usage of non–voice services mainly M-PESA and mobile data. Non-voice service revenue accounted for 56.8% of service revenue, recording a growth of 19.3% to Kshs 62.38bn. Overall voice service revenue now stands at 43.2% of service revenue and remained resilient in the year growing by 3.6% to Kshs 47.35bn. Mobile penetration in Kenya stood at 88.7%2 as at 30 June 2017, with Safaricom recording a leading subscriber share of 72.6%.
The total customer base grew by 10.8% to 29.5m as at 30th September 2017 as the telco continued to focus on customer acquisition and retention. M-PESA revenue recorded a growth of 16.2% to Kshs 30.05bn driven by 9.5% increase in 30 day active M-PESA customers to 19.3m.
Safaricom’s cashless platform, Lipa na M-PESA, continued to be adopted by enterprises as a preferred payment platform. “We now have over 70k merchants who are active on a 30 day basis. Mobile data revenue, which accounts for 16.0% of our service revenue, grew at 31.0% to Kshs 17.55bn. This was driven by 13.5% growth in 30 day active mobile data customers to 16.9m, increased bundle users and increased smartphone penetration during the period.” Stated Safaricom in a statement.
Fixed data revenue increased by 34.7% to Kshs 3.23bn attributed to 24.9% growth in fixed service customers. In the half year under review, Safaricom invested Kshs 17.4bn on capital expenditure.
Bob Collymore who is receiving treatment overseas commented on the performance saying “Kenya has gone through a period of uncertainty that has seen its second quarter GDP growth slowdown to 5% from last year’s 6.3%, being impacted by events like the elections, drought and interest rate capping. Despite this Safaricom has performed exceptionally well for the period and ensured sustained returns to our shareholders. We believe this was possible due to the resilience of our business and our people.”
Safaricom’s Chairman, Nicholas Ng’ang’a commended Collymore’s style of, management saying he has empowered managers adequately hence, the company is in strong hands.