MTN Nigeria, the largest mobile telecommunication firm in the country has reported a 23% rise in its FinTech revenue. This was confirmed by the company CEO, Ferdi Moolman in the company’s notes to the results.
Higher revenues: MTN reported a record N1.169 trillion in revenues for the year ended December 2019 up 12.5% year on year. Profit for the period under review was N202.1 billion up 38.7% year on year. The blistering result was backed by revenue growth across its voice and data services.
According to the Moolman, “voice revenue growth remained healthy at 8.4% and accounted for 72% of service revenue” as Nigerians continue to rely on GSM to contact loved ones and contract businesses. “Voice traffic increased by 7.6%, supporting revenue growth” he continued.
MTN has also recorded an increase in data revenue which it ascribed to “greater population coverage, a revamp of our data portfolio and initiatives to drive 4G device penetration” adding about N219.3 billion in revenues only. Data contributed 18.8 to service revenue.
On FinTech the MD/CEO revealed the division’s revenue growth was 23.3% “supported by increased adoption of MTN Xtratime our airtime lending service.” MTN does not disclose revenue from FInTech separately and captures it only as part of Value Added Services (VAS).
The company VAS business rose from N32.2 billion to N37.1 billion and includes airtime lending and mobile money (Fintech), subscriber identification module (SIM) back up services and voice-based services. According to Moolman, MTN launched a super agent service in August which helped increase their network of agents to about 108,000. He also said “the Agent network served almost one million customers in the first four months of operation” just as it focusses on further expansions.
Doubles down on FinTech: MTN also revealed plans to widen its FinTech service offering “from basic transfer service and airtime/data sales to a more extensive bouquet, including cash deposit and withdrawal services, bill payments and facilitating -e-commerce” it concluded.
MTN’s foray into the FinTech space has often been viewed as a game-changer in a very competitive and dynamic FinTech space. With its huge balance sheet and brand power, the company has a large cash pile that it can throw into space.
Competition: Several feelers from rival commercial banks suggest the banks have stifled MTN’s entrance into the challenger banking space as they believe they do not have an equal playing field. For example, MTN’s technological assets give it more advantages and access to customers through mobile while banks are still expected to retain physical branches increasing its cost of operations. Nigerian Banks are also strictly regulated compared to other FinTech players who are allowed to innovate and create products without much regulation.
In an interview last year (April), Fidelity Bank CEO, Nnamdi Okonkwo made this point clear when he said,
“You know it has been a prolonged push by the telecommunications companies to come into the banking space. We don’t have a problem with that. Let them be subjected to the same regulatory conditions that we have because you are talking about depositors’ money. So, once all of us are subject to regulatory control, we will all do banking together. I think the sky is big enough and as banks, we are not sleeping, that is why you see some of us deepening our digital platforms.”
PayPal is buying a Crypto security startup for less than $200 million
PayPal is set to outrightly purchase a crypto-security firm, Curv as part of its campaign in building its crypto ecosystem.
PayPal is set to outrightly purchase a crypto-security firm Curv as part of its campaign in building its crypto ecosystem, the company disclosed today.
According to a report credited to CNBC, the deal is estimated to be worth less than $200 million, it’s expected to close before June this year.
The company’s stock price however recorded some selling pressures at the time of writing amid rising U.S Treasury yields and greenback keeping global investors on their toes.
The crypto startup about to be acquired by PayPal provides companies with Crypto security technology via the cloud. PayPal revealed that the purchase would help its expansion on supporting crypto.
“The acquisition of Curv is part of our effort to invest in the talent and technology to realize our vision for a more inclusive financial system,” PayPal’s Jose Fernandez da Ponte said in a statement.
In a press statement seen by Nairametrics, Dan Schulman, president, and CEO, PayPal, gave key insights on why the global payment company was going crypto; The shift to digital forms of currencies is inevitable, bringing with it clear advantages in terms of; financial inclusion and access, efficiency, speed, the resilience of the payments system and the ability for governments to disburse funds to citizens quickly.
“Our global reach, digital payments expertise, two-sided network, and rigorous security and compliance controls provide us with the opportunity, and the responsibility, to help facilitate the understanding, redemption, and inter-operability of these new instruments of exchange,” he said.
Furthermore, he said, “We are eager to work with central banks and regulators around the world to offer our support and to meaningfully contribute to shaping the role that digital currencies will play in the future of global finance and commerce.”
This offering was made possible through a partnership with Paxos Trust Company, a regulated provider of crypto services and products.
Transcorp Hotels launches Aura, an online marketplace for accommodation and experiences
Nigeria’s largest hospitality brand launches a new platform for booking vacation homes, holiday lets, and experiences.
Africa’s leading hospitality brand Transcorp Hotels Plc. has announced the launch of Aura, a new digital platform through which people can book accommodation, restaurants, and experiences.
The new brand, Transcorp’s first in the alternative accommodation segment, is part of the company’s asset-light model, leveraging technology to deliver true hospitality, exciting experiences, and drive shareholder value.
“It’s a new dawn in the hospitality industry! I am thrilled to introduce you to Aura by Transcorp, the digital platform we are using to connect people to quality accommodation, great food, and awesome experiences,” Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Transcorp Hotels Plc., Dupe Olusola said.
“For more than 30 years, Transcorp Hotels Plc has been at the forefront of creating a superior guest experience at our locations. Today, our commitment to innovation has offered us an opportunity to extend this beyond the hotel premises,” Olusola added.
The launch of Aura by Transcorp is one of the most significant developments in the company’s history as it seeks to transform the travel and tourism industry in Africa by focusing on three important components of travel, whether for leisure or business — where you stay, what you eat and how you spend your time. With its people-driven hospitality model, Aura is set to revolutionise travel and help remind Africans of our deep history of hospitality.
Speaking on the launch of Aura, Obong Idiong, Chief Executive Officer at Africa Prudential Plc, Aura’s technology partners, expressed his excitement. “Finding the right accommodation when you travel can be incredibly complex. Options available for the right prices are often limited, and travellers sometimes end up with accommodation that taints the travel experience. Transcorp Hotels Plc has been able to fix that with Aura and we are proud to be associated with them.”
“To ensure topnotch user experience, we built a solution to drive digital transformation through the adoption of shared living spaces for the Aura business. With an advanced search algorithm powered by artificial intelligence, Aura determines the relevance of locations taking into consideration, the customers’ preferences and requirements to meet them at the point of their needs,” Idiong added.
Priscilla Adeboye, a travel enthusiast and early adopter of Aura, said the global pandemic has pushed international travel down her list. “But I still want to be able to take some time off work or spend a weekend away from home with the family. I have found incredible homes on Aura that meet my need for space and privacy.”
Working with thousands of partners across Nigeria and different cities in Africa, Transcorp Hotels Plc. is building the continent’s largest platform for people-driven hospitality. While travellers enjoy the right selections at the best prices on Aura, hosts can also earn a lot of money by receiving guests in their unoccupied homes and sharing the local culture with them.
For travellers who would rather stay in hotels, Aura also has a great selection of some of the best hotels in every city.
With the launch of Aura, Transcorp Hotels Plc. has further cemented its leadership in the hospitality industry and reinforced its commitment to innovation and superior guest experience across different demographics.
Guests and hosts can sign up at aura.transcorphotels.com to start booking or hosting. The service is currently available in Nigeria only, but the company said plans are already in place to expand to major cities in Africa.
Transcorp Hotels Plc is one of Africa’s leading hospitality companies, committed to redefining service standards across the continent while remaining truly and authentically African.
Aura by Transcorp
Aura is Africa’s best platform for connecting travellers with great accommodation, good food, and memorable experiences. The platform is also an avenue for people with unoccupied homes, hotels, restaurants, or different skill sets that may interest others can earn an income by becoming hosts.
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