Glo gains, as MTN, Vodafone, AirtelTigo lose subs


The latest Mobile Cellular Subscription Report published by the National Communication Authority (NCA), indicates that while Glo gained additional subscribers in August 2021, MTN, Vodafone and AirtelTigo suffered losses during the period under review.

Per there were over 41.8 million mobile cellular subscriptions in the country during the period under review, and that represents a little over 132 per cent mobile voice penetration against a population of 31,358,190.

The total figure represents a meager 0.81 per cent over that of the previous month.

Out of that total, Glo, which has been trailing on the market share league table for several years now, increased subscriptions by 1.09 per cent from 836,198 in July 2021 to 845,326 at the end of August 2021. Its total market share for the month under review, however, stood at a meagre 2.05%.

Market leader, MTN recorded about 23.45 million subscriptions for the period, representing a 0.33 percentage decrease from its July 2021 figure of 23.53 million. MTN therefore closed the period with a market share of 56.96 per cent.

Second place Vodafone also witnessed a dip in voice subscriptions from 9.6 million as at the end of July 2021, to 9.4 million by end of August 2021. This represents a relatively significant 2.03 per cent decrease, leaving the telco with a 22.86 per cent market share.

State-owned AirtelTigo also witnessed an drop in voice subscriptions from 7.54 million as of July ending to a little over 7.46 million as at the end of August 2021. This means some 1.01 per cent of subscription were lost, leaving AirtelTigo with 18.12 per cent market share. It actually lost market share on that occasion.

Data Subscription 

Meanwhile, total mobile data subscriptions in the country stands at about 23.3 million, representing a 74.59 per cent penetration.

Out of the total, MTN continues to lead the pack with about 15.8 million mobile data subscriptions, representing a significant 67.71 per cent market share.

This time, AirtelTigo came in second with 3.76 million data subscribers, representing 16.14 per cent market share, while Vodafone came in third with 3.37 million data subscriptions being 14.47 per cent market share.

Glo recorded data subscriber figures of 391,885 at the end of August 2021. This
reflects a market share of 1.68%.

Busy chips away Surfline’s market share

The other players in the data space are the Broadband Wireless Access (BWA) operators like Surfline, Telesol, Broadband Home and now Busy Internet, whose status in the market remained in mystery for years until recently.

The four BWAs provide data services via wireless media to consumer and business markets, and they accounted for some 53,551 subscriptions as at the end of August 2021.

Runaway market leader in that space, Surfline recorded a whopping 43,415 out of the total, being 81 per cent market share. Surfline is actually losing market share because used to command over 90 per cent market share for a long time.

The loss in Surfline’s market share could be attributed to the inclusion of Busy Internet to the BWA list. Busy Internet ended the period in second place, with some 6,165 subscriptions, being 11.5 per cent market share.

Telesol came in third with 2,915 subscriptions (5.4 per cent) and Broadband Home now trails the pack with 1,056 subscriptions, which is about two per cent.

MTN topples AirtelTigo on fixed telephony

Meanwhile, on the fixed line front, the total number of subscriptions between the three operators – Vodafone, AirtelTigo and MTN, was 317,126.

Of the three operators, Vodafone continues to be the overwhelming fixed telephony market leader with a whopping 309,596 subscriptions being 97.6 per cent market share.

But MTN has toppled AirtelTigo with some 4,177 subscriptions (1.32 per cent) over the latter’s 3,353 subscriptions (1.06 per cent).


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