MTN CEO to step down

MTN, Rob Shuter
MTN, Rob Shuter

MTN group president and CEO Rob Shuter will step down at the end of his fixed four-year contract in March 2021, the company announced on Wednesday.

“Under his leadership significant progress has been made, including establishing and effectively communicating a clear vision and strategy, driving the resolution of a number of complex matters and delivering significant improvements in transformation, operational performance and staff morale,” the company said in an announcement accompanying its results for the year to end-December.

Before joining MTN in 2017, Shuter headed some of Vodafone’s European operations. Previously, he was also chief financial officer of Vodacom in South Africa.

The board, led by MTN chairman, former deputy finance minister Mcebisi Jonas, is expected to appoint a new CEO during 2020.

The company reported 9.7% growth in its revenue for the year, bolstered by a 12.6% increase in Nigeria and 22.9% in Ghana. In South Africa, MTN’s revenue grew by only 0.4%.

MTN says its income in South Africa was impacted by the new rules about out-of-bundle data and data rollovers. It also took a hit of R283 million as part of its contract to supply Cell C with roaming services.

MTN’s voice revenue increased by 4.2%, while data revenue grew by 22.4%. Its subscribers increased by 18.2 million to 251 million.

The group reported a 13.6% increase in Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation).

A gross final dividend of 355 cents per share was declared, bringing the total dividend for the year to 550 cents - up 10% from prior year.

MTN’s share price is down 45% over the past year. It came under increased pressure this week amid fears that the oil crash will impact its earnings in Nigeria.

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