International Finance

MTN Nigeria loses thousands of subscribers as Airtel gains

MTN Airtel
Despite losing subscribers, MTN continues to dominate with a 42% market share

MTN Nigeria lost around 667,245 internet subscribers in just one month, according to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the independent regulatory authority for the telecommunications industry in Nigeria. While MTN Nigeria’s internet subscribers dropped from 52.2 million in July to 51.6 million in August, Airtel’s internet subscribers, continued to grow.

It is noteworthy that despite losing thousands of internet subscribers, MTN still continues to dominate the industry with a 42 percent market share. Airtel, meanwhile remains second after MTN with an estimated 32.7 million subscribers and a market share of 27 percent.

While MTN lost a record 667, 245 internet subscribers in August alone, interestingly, Airtel gained 350,134 internet subscribers in the same month, making it the only internet service provider in Nigeria that recorded positive growth, alongside Visafone with 83,482 internet subscribers.

According to reports, MTN also lost around 178,103 internet subscribers in June.

The report by the NCC conducted the study taking into account five major internet service providers -MTN, Airtel, 9mobile, Globacom, and Visafone.

While the sudden drop in internet subscribers may be caused by poor connectivity; many argue that the recent xenophobic attacks in South Africa may also have had an impact. According to reports, Nigeria’s internet download speed is among the slowest in the world.

Earlier this year, MTN Nigeria launched MoMo agent, its mobile money platform. Through MoMo agent, MTN Nigeria aims to provide financial services to unbanked Nigerians. MTN planned to rollout about 500,000 MoMo agents across Nigeria, however, not much has happened so far on the ground level.

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