Maroc Telecom, the country’s leading telco in terms of subscribers, has published its financial results for the nine months ended 30 September 2014, reporting a 1.9% annual increase in revenues, from MAD21.467billion (USD2.46 billion) to MAD21.865 billion. The improvement was chiefly attributed to 11.5% annual growth among the company’s international operations, which partly offset a 1.1% sales decrease in its domestic market during the same period. Meanwhile, Maroc Telecom’s EBITDA decreased by 3.0% in the period under review, to MAD12.009 billion; the slump was attributed to a 5.9% decline in the Moroccan unit’s EBITDA, although this was partly compensated by a 6.2% increase in EBITDA from the company’s international operations. Maroc Telecom’s consolidated earnings from operations in the period under review reached MAD8.110 billion, a 6.3% decrease year-on-year.
In operational terms, Maroc Telecom reported annualised growth of 10% for its consolidated customer base, with the total number of customers passing the 39.5 million-mark at end-September 2014. In Morocco, wireless subscribers marginally increased by 0.4% y-o-y to reach 18.381 million, up from 18.311 million in 9M 2013; the telco’s wireline user base grew by 7.9% to 1.454 million users, while broadband customers increased by 19.6% y-o-y to 944,000. In Mauritania, wireless numbers decreased by 2.8% to 1.826 million users, due to intense competition in the market, while broadband subscriptions increased by 6.7% to roughly 8,000. In Burkina Faso, the Office Nationale des Telecommunications (Onatel, incl. Telmob) saw its mobile subscribers increase by 34.6% y-o-y to reach 5.681 million by 30 September, although its broadband customer base declined by 32.3% to around 17,000. Further, Gabon Telecom reported a 11.4% increase in the number of its mobile users, to 1.086 million, while Mali-based operator Societe des Telecommunications du Mali (SOTELMA) increased its mobile subscriber numbers 21.7% to 9.715 million in 9M14, with more than one and a half million net additions in the period under review.
Abdeslam Ahizoune, chairman of Maroc Telecom’s management board, stated: ‘The return to revenues’ growth in Morocco is the prominent feature of the results of the third quarter. This reversal of trend is due to our firm policy of innovation and abundance of offerings and a continuous effort to improve the quality of our services. This performance coupled with the rapid growth in our subsidiaries has led to acceleration in the group’s growth rate. Maroc Telecom Group is thus reaping the rewards of its major investment programs, at a time when data use is sharply increasing in all of our markets.’