Johannesburg - Vodacom Group [JSE:VOD], the South African
unit of British mobile operator Vodafone, has reported a 9.3% rise in
first-quarter revenue, buoyed by growth in data and customers.
Vodacom said on Thursday revenue totalled just over R17bn in
the quarter to end-June.
Vodacom, which has operations in South Africa, Democratic
Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Mozambique and Lesotho, said its customer numbers
totalled 50 million at the end of June, compared with 47.8 million at the end
"I am particularly pleased with the sustained high
growth delivered by the International operations. Data demand in this segment
is accelerating, with active data customers increasing 152% and data revenue up
150%," chief executive Pieter Uys said.
Group data revenue was up almost 17%.
Although Vodacom has the largest subscriber base in South
Africa, it is dwarfed on the continent by MTN Group [JSE:MTN].
Vodacom and its rivals are fighting to extract more revenue
from data as the market for mobile voice usage stagnates.
The company said this month that Uys would step down in
March, to be replaced by Shameel Joosub, a Vodacom veteran who is currently
head of Vodafone's Spanish unit.
Vodacom shares are up 2% this year, compared with a 4% rise
in the benchmark Top 40 - (Tradeable) [JSE:J200] index.