Data and mobile money drive Airtel Uganda’s strong growth in 2017

Airtime sales as a share of total revenue fell while income from Airtel money and data revenue increased

Uganda’s second largest telecom Airtel Uganda Limited reported solid income growth during the 2017 calendar year as revenue improved while expenses dropped.

The company’s revenue increased by 11.8% to Shs1.1 trillion, spurred by rises in value-added services and data revenue, and income from Airtel money. Value-added services and data revenue increased by Shs65.8bn to Shs372.1bn while income from Airtel money grew to Shs190.7bn, Shs62.3bn higher than in 2016.

However, most of Airtel’s revenue in 2017 was from airtime sales, which made up 43.9% of the total. But these registered little growth, increasing by just 0.8% to Shs506.9bn. The share of airtime sales to total revenue also declined from 48.7% in 2016.

On the other hand, the proportions of Airtel money and value-added services and data revenue increased to 16.5% (12.4% in 2016) and 32.2% (29.6%) respectively.

After-tax profit rose 52.7% to Shs245bn from Shs160.4bn in 2016. Operating expenses decreased by 10.1% to Shs622.1bn. The company also reported lower finance costs during the year.

Airtel Uganda is a subsidiary of the Netherlands-based Bharti Airtel Uganda Holdings B.V., which is owned by Bharti Airtel Limited, which is registered in India.