MTN Nigeria recently announced its plans to conduct a comprehensive review of its tower contracts, aiming to optimize performance and drive efficiency across its network. This initiative includes a reassignment of approximately 2.5k network sites previously under IHS portfolio to ATC.
Currently, IHS holds 14.6k sites (80%) compared to ATC’s 2.3k (13%). However, after a competitive bidding process, the 2.5k network sites set to expire in 2024 and 2025 under IHS portfolio have been awarded to ATC. Consequently, IHS’ portfolio will decrease to 12.1k sites (66%), while ATC’s will rise to 4.7k (26%). The remaining IHS sites are scheduled to expire between 2025 and 2029, with the majority in 2029.
Karl Toriola, CEO of MTN Nigeria, emphasized the importance of efficient tower contracts in driving cost-effective operations, deepening broadband penetration, and implementing leading technology in the telco’s operations. Toriola highlighted that MTN will regularly assess its partnerships to ensure they align with the company’s site requirements, focusing not only on efficiency but also on cost optimization, green energy usage, and sustainability.
During MTN Nigeria’s Capital Markets Day event, Toriola discussed the company’s progress in achieving its ‘Ambition 2025’ Strategy and highlighted the emerging opportunities in Nigeria’s digital economy to local and international investors. He expressed optimism about Nigeria’s economic reforms, stating that private sector investment would play a critical role. Toriola emphasized the company’s commitment to inclusive growth, expanding connectivity, and supporting financial inclusion in the country.
Modupe Kadri, MTN Nigeria’s Chief Financial Officer, stressed the significance of energy efficiency initiatives and Independent Power Projects (IPP) in achieving the company’s expense efficiency objectives. He emphasized that renegotiating tower contracts, combined with disciplined capital allocation, would help mitigate the impact of forex liberalization and increased energy costs.
The move signifies MTN Nigeria’s strategic efforts to enhance operational efficiency, technological advancement, and sustainable growth in the telecommunications sector while leveraging emerging opportunities in Nigeria’s evolving digital economy.