Airtel Africa Plc has reported a revenue of $3.422 billion for the year ended March 31, 2020, showing an increase of 13 per cent from $3.077 billion recorded in 2019. Profit before tax rose 77 per cent from $348 million in 2019 to $598 million in 2020. However, a higher tax payment that jumped by 330 per cent, made the telecommunications firm to end the year with a profit after tax (PAT)of $408 million in 2020, compared with $426 million in 2019.
Commenting, the Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Africa Plc, Mr. Raghunath Mandava, said these are a strong set of results which were delivered against their aspirations set out at the time of the Initial Public Offering (IPO), with performance sequentially improving during the year.
“These results also demonstrate the strength and resilience of our business and the effectiveness of our strategy – with all three business services, voice, data and mobile money, contributing to revenue growth. We have also continued to invest in future growth opportunities as we expanded our distribution, modernised and expanded our network with 65 per cent of sites now on 4G, acquired new spectrum in Nigeria, Tanzania, Malawi and Chad, and entered into strategic partnerships in our mobile money business,” he said.
According to him, more recently, the markets where they operate have begun to be impacted by the COVID-19 and the related actions that governments have implemented to reduce the risk of contagion. “Our priority has been to keep our colleagues, suppliers and customers safe whilst supporting the communities in which we operate. Telecoms businesses provide strategically essential services to ensure the functioning of economies and communities and are, therefore, more resilient compared to some other sectors. In Africa, the spread of the COVID-19 has lagged the rest of the world and, therefore, it is difficult to precisely forecast what the impact of this will be on customers and business. However, our performance during the month of April has been resilient as the business continued to deliver constant currency revenue growth, although at a lower rate,” the CEO added.
He said that as they enter this period of increased volatility in a strong financial position and their view on the medium-term opportunities across our footprint has not changed, noting that these markets would continue to benefit from strong population growth and the need for increased connectivity and financial inclusion.