Safaricom announced its HY 2017 financial results for the period ended 30th September 2016 with non-voice revenue that includes M-Pesa, data, smartphone sales contributing the lion’s share the Ksh98 Billion total revenue as compared to voice revenue.
The total revenue represented a 15.4% growth with voice revenue raking in Kshs 45.7 Billion while non-voice revenue bringing in Kshs. 52.3 Billion.
M-Pesa, the mobile money service owned by Safaricom on the other hand experienced growth and now stands at 17.6 Million users. Customer transactions grew 38.4% to 9.3 transactions per month for each customer.
M-PESA revenue recorded a growth of 33.7% to Kshs 25.9bn driven by 12.2% increase in 30 day active M-PESA customers to 17.6m and a 38.4% growth in monthly usage per customer to 9.3 transactions per month.
“Our cashless platform, Lipa na M-PESA, has been well received among enterprises. We had over 50,000 merchants who were active on a 30 day basis as at end of September 2016. Mobile data revenue, which accounts for 13.7% of our service revenue, grew at 46.3% to Kshs 13.4bn. This was driven by a 13.7% growth in 30 day active mobile data customers to 14.9m, increased bundle users and smartphone penetration. We introduced ‘My Data Manager’ functionality which gives customers control to in-bundle browsing. This has seen bundle users grow by 38.5% to 7.4m. By 30 September 2016 we had 10.5m customers on 3G and 4G enabled devices. Our Fixed data revenue increased by 29.1% to Kshs 2.4bn on the back of 21.6% growth in fixed service customers,” said Chief Executive Officer of the telco.
During the six months under review, Free Cash Flow grew by 111.6% to Kshs 20.1bn on improved trading results and completion of the National Police Security(NPS) Network Project (we spent Kshs 8.44bn on NPS by 30 September 2015).
” Improving our network quality remains key and we continue with our efforts to increase network coverage and capacity to ensure excellent performance and superior customer experience. In the six months to 30 September 2016, we invested Kshs 18.9bn on capital expenditure. We remain focused on delivering efficiencies in our processes. In the period, our operating expenses as a percentage of total revenue declined to 20.6% compared to 22.5% in a similar period last financial year. The business delivered good results and has continued to create value for our shareholders, supported by growth across all our revenue streams and focus on cost efficiency. This has resulted to an underlying EBITDA margin of 46.5%3, being a 2.8ppt improvement over the same period in the last financial year,” he added.
Safaricom is now looking to improve its customer experience with initiatives such as expanding the capacity of the call center to handle more calls and offering customers more self-help options.
The company will also continue to embed segment marketing approach in the business and offer segment specific propositions to customers.
“Mobile data is our fastest growing revenue stream, and we will focus on increasing the numbers of 3G and 4G smartphones on our network through launching more 4G (LTE) sites and offering affordable smart devices. We will continue with our fibre rollout to homes that will enable us to offer high speed internet and data, “said Collymore.