JOHANNESBURG, June 4 (Reuters) - South Africa's MTN Group
will bid again for an Ethiopia operating telecom
licence in the second round if mobile financial services are
included, its CEO said on Friday after losing the first round.
Mobile financial services is key to MTN's strategy as it
continues to evolve from just providing voice to also providing
data, digital services and mobile payment and lending solutions
as demand for these services rise.
MTN expects fintech service revenue contribution to rise
from 8% to 20% in 2025, with mobile money subscribers seen
rising to 100 million from the current 46.6 million, Chief
Financial Officer Tsholofelo Molefe told investors.
"For us it will really be important to see mobile money in
that opportunity to put forward a bid and if it's not there then
probably we wouldn't even bid," MTN Group CEO Ralph Mupita told
investors at the group's capital markets day
If licence conditions in the second round remain the same,
it might not bid at a higher amount, he said.
Last month Ethiopia's telecommunications regulator announced
that it had awarded one operating licence to a consortium led by
Kenya's Safaricom, Vodafone, and Japan's
The consortium, which includes Vodacom and British
development finance agency CDC Group, paid $850 million for the
licence, while MTN's offer of $600 million was deemed too low.
"We really wanted to have seen mobile money in the licence
regime, so we adjusted our bid for the lack of mobile money,"
(Reporting by Nqobile Dludla
Editing by Tanisha Heiberg and David Evans)