Business News of Thursday, 14 February 2013
Ghana’s telecoms market leader MTN Ghana set a target of 950,000 additional subscribers for 2012, but the company finished the year with an additional 1.58 million subscribers.
MTN closed 2011 with 10,156,112 and increased that to 11,734,500 subscribers by the close of last year, to consolidate its lead with 46% market share.
The company exceeded its 950,000 target earlier in the year and raised the bar to 1.4 million, but it has also exceeded the new target by more than 170,000 additional subscribers.
This increase in subscription was in spite of the fact that MTN has been the biggest loser to mobile number portability (MNP) since it was introduced in July 2011.
Meanwhile new entrant Glo Mobile has also been chipping away market share from all existing players including MTN.
MTN also suffered a number of significant network interruptions last year, which compelled the regulator, National Communication Authority to stop them from adding on any more subscribers from early December.
Indeed one of Ghana’s top telco bosses (name withheld) lauded MTN for maintaining and increasing subscribers in spite of MNP, the entry of Glo and the network challenges MTN faced.
The telco boss said: “MTN has done a much better job at protecting their customers than we expected them to do. When you have a telco with such huge market share you anticipate you would be able to take some of their customers but I am very impressed by MTN – they have done a great job. Now I need to find other ways of getting new customers and it is making my job a whole lot difficult.”
Meanwhile, an additional 4.45 million mobile phone lines were connected in the country in the year 2012. Total mobile voice subscriber base in Ghana as at December 2011 was 21,165,843, but it increased to 25,618,427 in December 2012.
This means mobile penetration increased from 100.4% in November 2012 to 101.4% in December 2012.
Meanwhile, Vodafone maintained it second position by increasing subscriber base to 5,259,487 which represent 21 % of total market share.?
Tigo also recorded a marginal subscriber base increase, closing at 3,698,409 which represents 14% of the market; and Airtel also increased its subscriber base to 3,192,154 representing 12% of the total market share.
Glo however recorded a further decrease in subscribers down to 1,568,014 represents 6% of the total market share.
Glo Ghana has been quoting two million customers, but the NCA’s records show the company does not have 2 million subscribers yet.
It is interesting to note that Glo’s total number of subscribers by the close of the year is marginally lower than MTN’s additional subscribers for the year.?
Expresso also decreased its subscriber base to 165,863, which is less than one per cent of the total market share.