South Africa’s second-largest network provider, Vodacom, reports that the positive reception of its VodaPay app launched in October last year has strongly supported the group’s performance and its broader financial services business, as the company saw its revenue rise by 12.5% to an unexpected R2 billion for the first time in the three months to December 31.
The group noted in its Tuesday business statement that financial services remain a priority for the company and the business continues to grow.
“The group remains committed to focusing on economic recovery in the markets where we operate through the execution of a targeted six-point plan. This plan includes expanding network coverage and resilience, accelerating support for governments, improving digital accessibility and adoption, and supporting our customers as they adapt to new ways of working and promote financial inclusion,” said Shameel Joosub, CEO of Vodacom group.
“In South Africa, the launch of our super app VodaPay last October exceeded our expectations by attracting 1.4 million downloads and 1.0 million registered users in its first three months. We see VodaPay as a precursor to the evolution of M-Pesa and further strengthening our fintech position across our footprint.
“Our M-Pesa platform, including Safaricom, continues to scale at an impressive pace with transaction values up 16.1% to exceed R430 billion per month.”
The group’s overall revenue increased by 6.4% to R26.7 billion over the same period, with its services revenue increasing by 5.3% to R20.7 billion thanks to to a continued demand for connectivity and the growth of new services, including financial and digital services such as the VodaPay app which allows users to make purchases, pay bills and send money.
In South Africa, Vodacom’s revenue rose 5.8% to R20.9 billion, while its services revenue rose 4.5% to R14.9 billion, also supported by sustained demand for connectivity, growth in financial services and increased engagement since the launch of the app.
Its South African customer base grew 3.3% year-on-year (year-on-year) to 45.8 million, while internationally it grew to 42.1 million, representing an increase of 6.9% YoY.
“In South Africa, we invested an additional R2.3 billion in the network during the quarter and delivered great value to customers through a highly successful summer campaign that attracted over 400 million engagements, unlocking prizes and awards for our extended customer base,” added Joosub. .
The group also noted that its data traffic growth rate accelerated to 25.9%, supported by work-from-home solutions. Smart devices on its network increased by 11.3% to 25.9 million, while the number of 4G devices increased by 14.7% to 17.3 million. Average usage per smart device increased by 24.4% to 2.5 GB per month.
“A key focus of our international portfolio is digital inclusion, which will be supported by our growing database of 21.5 million customers and will drive smartphone adoption. Global smartphone customers stand at 12 million,” Joosub said.
“Looking forward, we are encouraged by the post-Covid-19 recovery unfolding in many of the markets in which we operate and look forward to making meaningful contributions to foster economic development.”
Palesa Mofokeng is an intern at Moneyweb.