Airtel Africa’s revenue recovers from naira devaluation slump, jumps by 19.7%

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Airtel Africa grew its revenue in constant currency terms by 19.7%. The company also grew its customer base to 147.7 million.

Airtel Africa grew its revenue in constant currency terms by 19.7% for the half-year ended September 30, 2023, according to the company’s financial statements published on the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX) on Monday.  This is an indication that the company is recovering from the naira devaluation in June that led to a $151 million loss in the first quarter of 2023. 

Despite this revenue growth,  the company reported a loss after tax of $13 million, driven by a foreign exchange loss of $471 million recorded before tax. It also reported a $317m loss after tax due to the naira devaluation. Airtel classified this impact as an exceptional item.

Key takeaways

  • Airtel grew its constant currency revenue by 19.7% in the period under review.
  • The telco recorded a loss after tax of $13 million.
  • Airtel grew its total customer base by 9.7% to 147.7 million.

“As reported in July 2023, our results for the first quarter were significantly impacted by the changes to the FX market in Nigeria, introduced by the Central Bank. Whilst the changes are required for the long-term benefit of the Nigerian economy, the immediate impact of the naira devaluation continues to weigh on our reported financial performance in the period,” Airtel Africa’s CEO, Olusegun Ogunsanya said of the financial performance.

The company said all its segments delivered double-digit constant currency revenue growth despite the impact of the currency devaluation. Mobile services revenue was up 18.3%, thanks to an 11.5% growth in voice revenue and a 28.1% growth in data revenue. Airtel’s mobile money revenue also grew by 30.9% in constant currency.

Airtel also grew its total customer base by 9.7% to 147.7 million. Airtel’s data customers rose by 23% to 59.8 million, while its mobile money customers grew by 23.1% to 36.5 million. With its operating performance, the company hopes to grow its presence across its 14 markets on the continent. In August, TechCabal reported that the company was planning to list shares on the Uganda Securities Exchange. The telco intends to sell 20% of its wholly-owned subsidiary in Uganda, Airtel Uganda Limited.

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