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South Africa Telecommunications Report Q1 2017

  • November 2016
  • -
  • Business Monitor International
  • -
  • 79 pages

Includes 3 FREE quarterly updates

BMI View:
We have made some minor forecast revisions in this quarterly update to account for the latest data but retain our positive outlook for the South African mobile market and telecoms sector overall. Subscription growth in the market is driven by a variety of factors including operators' promotional offerings, multiple SIM ownership and launch of advanced data services. 3G and 4G services have strong uptake as well as a positive impact on non-voice service revenues, with all four carriers launching LTEAdvanced technology offerings. Further market landscape changes are expected as Blue Label Telecoms is expected to acquire 45% ownership of Cell C.

Latest Updates & Industry Developments


- The South African mobile subscriptions reached 91.2mn in H116, up 7.4% y-o-y, with penetration reaching 165.9%. Vodacom and Cell C encountered positive customer growth whereas MTN experienced a decline of 783,000 customers.

- In late 2016, The High Court in Pretoria ruled that the country's telecoms regulator, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), could not go ahead with the auction of R12bn-worth of LTE spectrum. The government's recent ICT Policy White Paper considers various spectrum propositions as the level of intervention in the market heightens.

- The main source of future growth in the mobile market will be the development of 3G and 4G services, with the launch of LTE a clear signal that operators are preparing for intense competition based on the delivery of data services. We currently expect the number of 3G and 4G customers to rise to 47.7mn by the end of 2020, equivalent to 49.79% of the forecast mobile subscriber base. We forecast broadband subscriptions to increase from 8.44mn in 2016 to 9.14mn in 2020, equivalent to a penetration rate of 16.14%. Increasing competition and investment pose an upside risk to this forecast with more focused contributions to the broadband market by open access players to result in a medium-term surge of growth in the number of retail broadband subscriptions.

Table Of Contents

South Africa Telecommunications Report Q1 2017
BMI Industry View 7
SWOT 9
Telecoms 9
Industry Forecast 11
Latest Updates 11
Structural Trends 11
Table: Telecoms Sector - Historical Data and Forecasts (South Africa 2013-2020) 15
Industry Risk Reward Index 16
SSA Risk/Reward Index 16
Table: Sub-Saharan Africa Risk/Reward Index, Q1 2017 20
South Africa Risk/Reward Index 22
Market Overview 24
Market Drivers and Trends 24
Mobile 24
Wireline Voice and Broadband 36
Table: Telkom Fixed Telephony Access Lines ('000) 37
Table: Telkom Internet Subscriptions ('000) 38
Regulatory Development 40
Table: National Broadband Policy Access Targets 43
Competitive Landscape 44
Table: Key Players 44
Table: Mobile Market Overview 45
Table: MTN 45
Table: Vodacom 46
Table: Cell C 48
Table: 8ta 48
Table: Virgin Mobile 49
Company Profile 50
Cell C 50
MTN 54
Telkom 59
Vodacom 64
Demographic Forecast 68
Demographic Outlook 68
Table: Population Headline Indicators (South Africa 1990-2025) 69
Table: Key Population Ratios (South Africa 1990-2025) 69
Table: Urban/Rural Population and Life Expectancy (South Africa 1990-2025) 70
Table: Population By Age Group (South Africa 1990-2025) 70
Table: Population By Age Group % (South Africa 1990-2025) 71
Glossary 73
Table: Glossary Of Terms 73
Methodology 75
Industry Forecast Methodology 75
Sources 77
Risk/Reward Index Methodology 77
Table: Risk/Reward Index Indicators 78
Table: Weighting Of Indicators 79

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