MTN Nigeria moves to boost earnings, renegotiates agreement with Tower firms
The local unit of South Africa’s telecoms firm, MTN Nigeria on Thursday said it has reached an agreement with some of its infrastructural providers to expand the scope of their current service and amend the currency conversion provision for tower services.
The telecoms firm said in a regulatory filing to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) that Global Independent Connect, INT Towers and IHS Towers, the leasing companies for the majority of its Tower/site space have concluded renegotiation of certain terms of its tower rental agreement.
“These include an increased focus on rural connectivity and fibre deployment. Furthermore, the changes will result in improved cost for future technology evolution and backhaul in the network, which will bear fruit in the longer term.
MTN said the parties have agreed to move the reference rate of conversion to naira from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) rate to the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange rate.
The telecoms firm said it took a strategic decision to sell its passive infrastructure, which includes towers to enable it to focus on its core business while retaining a small number of towers. It said it currently has a number of towers providers across the country, including IHS Towers.
MTN Nigeria, however, did not provide the details of the agreement with the Towers companies and what it will entail beyond the adjustment of currency exchange, which is expected to increase its earnings in naira terms on some of the infrastructures on lease to some of the towers companies.
From an insider, the telecoms giants may reduce its reliance on Tower and site to beam its services to subscribers and increase provisions of services through fibre optics to enhance quality and reduce cost of support the more expensive site maintenance.