According to an interim presentation released by Blue Label Telecoms, MTN is continuing to lose market share to rival telecoms operator Cell C.
The presentation by Blue Label Telecoms was for their half year results to the end of November 2014, and provided a breakdown of its prepaid airtime distribution for South Africa’s main mobile companies.
According to the results, MTN lost 2% of their pre-paid airtime sales to Cell C in the six months from June to November 2014.
MTN now accounts for 27% of Blue Label Telecoms’ airtime sales down from 32% the year before, Cell C has grown from 17% in 2013 to 21% currently, and Vodacom has remained stable at 50%.
While these numbers only show what the market is doing inside Blue Label, it is estimated that they are a fairly accurate reflection of what the broader market is doing.
According to Cell C’s results for the year end December 2014, they closed the year with 19.6 million customers, which translated to a year-on-year increase of 44%.
MTN meanwhile is due to report new subscriber numbers in March, which currently stand at approximately 25 Million.
According to a recent report by Bloomberg, Cell C may also be exploring the possibility of a sale to “domestic competitors”.
Many analysts feel that Telkom is the logical partner for Cell C, and according to Telkom CEO, Sipho Maseko, the company will definitely consider buying the mobile operator, “if the price is right.” They are not however in any official talks with Cell C.