Vodafone has moved to cut its shareholding in Kenya's leading mobile operator.

Telecommunications giant Safaricom has announced an 18.3% net profit rise to Ksh45.1 billion in the year 2016 to March 2017.

Total revenue crossed the Ksh200 billion mark for the first time to stand at Ksh212.9 billion, an 8.8% rise.

The revenue growth is backed by a strong performance in mobile money M-Pesa and data while traditional services like voice remained resilient.

M-Pesa revenues grew from Sh41.5 billion to Sh55.08 billion while data revenues grew by 38.6% to Sh29.29 billion.

Voice service (incoming and outgoing) revenue rose by 2.9% to Sh93.5 billion while SMS revenue declined by 3.7% to Sh16.7 billion.

The Safaricom board has recommended a dividend of Sh0.97 per share – an increase of 27.5% from the previous year.

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See Also: Bob Collymore’s contract extended by two years

The proposed dividend payout amounts to Sh38.86 billion, which represents 80 per cent of Safaricom’s net profit for the year.

The board also announced extension of the chief executive Bob Collymore’s contract for another two years.

His contract was set to expire in August.

Safaricom chairman Nicholas Ng’ang’a said the Safaricom board “is happy that Mr Collymore has successfully navigated the company through difficult times.”

Key results highlights

  • Service revenue up 14.8% to Sh204.1 billion.
  • Total customer base increased by 11.8%  to 28.1 million.
  • Voice service (incoming and outgoing) revenue rose by 2.9% to Sh93.5 billion.
  • SMS revenue declined by 3.7% to Sh16.7 billion.
  • M-PESA revenue increased by 32.7% to Sh55.1 billion.
  • 30-day active M-Pesa customers increased by 14.6% to 19.0 million.
  • Mobile data revenue grew by 38.5% to Sh29.3 billion.
  • 30-day active mobile data customers increased by 18.1% increase to 16.6 million.
  • Fixed service revenue growth of 37.4 %  to Sh5.2 billion.

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Business Daily is Kenya's only daily business newspaper published by the Nation Media Group. The newspaper, launched in March 2007, is published from Monday to Friday, with the Friday edition circulating over the weekend. It is based at the Nation Centre in Nairobi.

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