- Airtel Africa, a leading telecommunications group listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, has unveiled plans to repurchase $100 million worth of its shares from the market. The $100m share buyback initiative, stated to commence in March and span over 12 months, aims to enhance shareholder value and consolidate the company’s position in the market.
In its recently released 9-month financial report for the period ending December 2023, Airtel Africa disclosed its intention to embark on a $100m share buyback program, signaling confidence in its growth trajectory and commitment to optimizing capital allocation. The move underscores the company’s proactive approach to capital management and its belief in the long-term potential of its business.
A share buyback entails the repurchase and cancellation of existing shares, thereby reducing the total number of shares outstanding. This results in a higher ownership stake for remaining shareholders and can potentially lead to increased earnings per share and enhanced shareholder returns over time.
Airtel Africa’s decision to initiate the $100m share buyback program is supported by its robust financial performance and strong operational metrics. The company reported a 9.1% increase in its overall customer base, reaching 151.2 million subscribers across all markets. Notably, its mobile data and mobile money services witnessed significant growth, with data subscribers expanding by 22.4% to 62.7 million and mobile money users reaching 37.5 million, representing a growth of 19.5%.
Furthermore, Airtel Africa recorded a commendable 20.2% constant currency revenue growth in voice, data, and mobile money services across the region. Its annual mobile money transactions soared to $116 billion, reflecting a robust demand for digital financial services in its operating markets.
What the CEO has to say,
In light of these positive developments, Airtel Africa’s CEO, Ogunsanya, expressed confidence in the company’s ability to capitalize on growth opportunities in the telecommunications sector. Despite facing challenges such as escalating diesel costs, currency devaluation, and inflationary pressures in certain markets, the company remains steadfast in its commitment to maintaining margin resilience and delivering sustainable value to its stakeholders.
Looking ahead, Airtel Africa reiterated its commitment to financial discipline and announced its intention to fully repay its HoldCo debt of $550 million, due in May 2024. This proactive approach to debt management underscores the company’s prudent financial strategy and its determination to strengthen its balance sheet.
In conclusion, Airtel Africa’s $100m share buyback initiative, coupled with its impressive financial performance and strategic outlook, positions the company for continued growth and value creation in the dynamic telecommunications landscape.
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