MTN has launched Mahindra Conviva's Mobile Data Platform (MDP) solution to enrich user experience and facilitate the monetisation of data infrastructure across multiple wireless technologies. BMI is sanguine about MTN's move as it chimes with our view of efficiency improvement and revenue stream diversification as key strategies for outperformance.
|Keen To Stay On Top|
|The Republic Of Congo Operators By Market Shares (%)|
The MDP solution, according Mahindra Comviva executives, has the potential to achieve two key goals for network operators - manage and optimise data infrastructure as well as improve customer experience through intelligent bandwidth management techniques and allowing customers to access personalised data plans. The solution also facilitates communication between operators and subscribers through popular channels such as SMS, USSD and web application for notifications on credit usage/limits and roaming charges.
BMI calculates that the Republic of Congo's mobile subscriber base of 4.660mn at the end of 2013, according to the regulator's data, was equivalent to a penetration of 107.8%. Meanwhile, there is still uncertainty over main rival Airtel's plan to acquire third-ranked Warid, a move that could give the latter a dominant position in the mobile market with a combined market share of 56.2% compared to MTN's market share of 37.9% as of December 2013. Although MTN managed to maintain a stable ARPU level between 2010 and 2013, we expect increased downward pressure on the operator's ARPU rates in the future as a result of market saturation and attempts to defend its market share.
MTN's investment in the MDP solution underscores its desire to maintain a competitive edge considering the changing dynamics in the mobile market. Congo is one of the few countries in the region where MTN's ARPU is still above US$10. We believe that MTN's ability to effectively monetise its mobile data infrastructure as well as reduce churn rates through better customer satisfaction is crucial for it to maintain double-digit ARPUs, at least over the medium term.