Mobile network operators in Nigeria, including MTN, Airtel, Globacom and 9mobile, recorded an increase of 10.9 million active subscriptions in the first six months of 2022. According to the latest industry data released by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), this brought the total number of mobile subscriptions in the country at the end of June 2022 at 206 million.
As of December 2021, active subscriptions across the four networks were 195.1 million. The growth came after operators had a bad year in 2021 following the government’s ban on new SIM registrations between December 2020 and April 2021.
With the growth registered by the operators, the country’s teledensity, which measures the number of active telephone connections per 100 inhabitants living in an area, has also increased from 102.40% in December 2021 to 108.15% in June 2022. NCC, the teledensity is calculated based on a population estimate of 190 million.
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How the telcos fared in the past 6 months
The NCC’s statistics show that MTN, the largest operator by subscriber number, received 5.4 million new subscriptions between January and June of this year. This brought its total active customer base to 79 million, from 73.59 million in December 2021. Airtel added 4.2 million new subscriptions over the period to maintain its position as the second largest operator. The telco’s active customer database increased to 58.1 million at the end of June 2022, from 53.9 million in December 2021. Globacom also gained new customers during the reporting period as its subscription database grew by 1.4 million. This brought the total number of subscriptions to 56.2 million, from 54.8 million in December last year. However, 9mobile recorded a loss of subscriptions over the period. The company’s database decreased by 129,988 to 12.6 million, from 12.7 million subscriptions it registered in December 2021. Before the policy-driven decline last year, active mobile subscriptions in Nigeria had grown steadily to a record high of 207.57 million in October 2020. With the steady increase recorded this year, the country will surpass the 2020 record.