MTN Group, South Africa’s largest mobile operator by subscribers, said on Friday it expects 2020 earnings to nearly double, mainly on gains from the sale of Uganda and Ghana tower joint ventures.
MTN is in the middle of a 25 billion rand (US$1.67B) divestment plan aimed at simplifying its portfolio over the next three to five years.
Part of this entailed selling its 49% holdings in Ghana Tower Interco B.V. and Uganda Tower Interco B.V. to AT Sher Netherlands Coöperatief U.A. for US$523M last year.
Its earnings per share (EPS) may have increased by as much as 95% to 987 cents in the year ended Dec. 31 from 506 cents a year ago, the company said in a statement ahead of the release of its annual results on March 10.
At 1406 GMT shares in MTN were 6.68% firmer at 70.57 rand, a level last hit on Dec.10.
Headline earnings per share (HEPS), the main profit gauge for South African firms, is seen rising as much as 70% to 796 cents from 468 cents in Dec 2019. It excludes certain one-off items.