Business & Markets

Airtel Africa to buy back $100 million worth of its shares starting from March

Airtel Africa to buy back $100 million worth of its shares starting from March

Telecommunications group, Airtel Africa, has announced plans to buy back $100 million worth of its share from the market.

The company, listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, disclosed this as it announced its 9-month financial report for the period ending December 2023 on Thursday. According to Airtel Africa, the share buyback exercise is expected to start in March and will run over 12 months.

The company said its Board believes that repurchasing its shares is an attractive use of its capital in light of the Group’s strong long-term growth outlook. It added that the program will be executed using its cash reserves and under applicable securities laws and regulations.

What the Airtel Group CEO is saying

Commenting on the company’s financial performance and the plans to buy back the company’s shares, Airtel Africa’s CEO, Segun Ogunsanya, said:

  • “In light of our consistent strong operating performance and given current leverage, the Board intends to launch a share buy-back program of up to $100m, starting early March 2024 over 12 months.
  • “We continue to be well positioned to deliver on the attractive growth opportunities our markets offer and despite the challenge of rising diesel prices, ongoing currency devaluation, and inflationary pressures across some of our markets, we remain focussed on margin resilience.”

Operating performance

For the nine months, Airtel Africa’s total customer base grew by 9.1% to 151.2 million. According to the company, the penetration of mobile data and mobile money services continued to rise, driving a 22.4% increase in its data customers to 62.7 million and a 19.5% increase in mobile money customers to 37.5 million.

The company also reported that its mobile money transaction value increased by 41.3% in constant currency, with Q3’24 annualized transaction value of $116 billion in reported currency.

  • “We remain focussed on the execution of our growth strategy and, combined with our strong operational execution, this has ensured that we continue to see sustained, positive growth momentum across the business, despite the inflationary and currency headwinds.
  • “Demand remains resilient, highlighting the vital nature of the voice, data, and mobile money services we provide to our customers across the region, and has resulted in a strong 20.2% constant currency revenue growth over the period, with an increase in EBITDA margins. This strong operating performance has limited the impact that currency movements have had on the Group.
  • In this regard, whilst further currency devaluation, particularly in Nigeria, has weighed on our reported financial performance, it will not affect the execution of our growth plans,” Ogunsanya stated.


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