South African Vodacom Group has reported group revenues of ZAR15.43 billion (USD2.03 billion) for the three months ended 31 December 2009, up 6% from ZAR14.56 billion in the same period a year earlier. The company attributed revenue growth to the January 2009 acquisition of Gateway Communications and a 33.1% year-on-year growth in data revenues. Group data revenue was ZAR1.19 billion for the final three months of 2009, with the company’s domestic operation accounting for ZAR1.16 billion of the total. Pieter Uys, CEO of Vodacom, said: ‘This has been a positive quarter for Vodacom, featuring solid overall revenue growth and continued progress in building our data business. Despite a challenging economic environment, our South African business posted a 7.5% increase in revenue. The actions we have taken in our international businesses have shown positive results in the form of improved market positioning. Cost management programmes are also gaining momentum and should provide the basis for improved margin management in the year ahead. Careful allocation of capital to investment projects has resulted in continued strong growth in cash flows.’
The group ended 2009 with a consolidated mobile customer base of 40.5 million, a 9.5% year-on-year growth. Vodacom South Africa accounted for 67% of the total with 27.1 million subscribers, up from 26.45 million a year earlier. Three of the company’s international operations also reported year-on-year customer growth. The firm’s Tanzania, Mozambique and Lesotho-based subsidiaries saw their customer bases grow by 28.4%, 61.1% and 30.9% respectively. Growth in other operations helped offset a 12.9% decline in Vodacom’s Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) subscriber base, which stood at 3.52 million following a change in disconnection policy from 215 to 90 inactive days.