This report provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments in Nigeria’s telecommunications market. The report analyses the mobile, internet, broadband, digital TV and converging media sectors. Subjects include:
Researcher:- Henry Lancaster
Current publication date:- February 2018 (17th Edition)
Nigeria has one of the largest telecom markets in Africa, supported by the second largest economy on the continent after South Africa. During 2016 the economy went into recession, though GDP growth returned in 2017. Given the potential for further growth, the telecom sector attracts considerable foreign investment. Market liberalisation measures in recent years have led to hundreds of companies, many of them small and localised, being set up to provide a range of telecom and value-added services.
The mobile sector has benefited from market competition and the wider deployment of LTE technologies, which have in turn supported operator revenue growth and encouraged the adoption of mobile broadband among subscribers. Other than the key mobile network operators, there are a number of additional players operating under a unified licensing regime.
The regulator has licensed four regional infrastructure companies (InfraCos) to build a national broadband network and offer capacity to all service providers on a non-discriminatory, open-access and price-regulated basis. An additional three InfraCo licenses are expected to be awarded by mid-2018.
The competitive fixed-line market includes a second national operator (Globacom) and over 80 other licensed companies. The alternative carriers combined provide around 85% of all fixed connections, though in general terms about 80% of all connections are wireless.
Nigeria’s broadband sector has seen considerable consolidation among players, from over 400 ISPs in 2012 to fewer than 90 by early 2018. Most internet connections are via mobile networks, principally GSM and 3G and more recently LTE, though there are a number of WiMAX operators which have found niche markets. The government has continued with its plan to increase broadband penetration to 30% by 2018 and to increase mobile broadband penetration to 50% by 2020. To this end the regulator is looking to auction additional spectrum in the 700MHz and 2.3GHz bands.
The country has Africa’s largest mobile market, with about 142 million subscribers and a penetration rate of 101%. The number of subscribers fell in 2017 as consumers responded to a poor economic climate, adopted other OTT channels for voice and data services, and as regulatory measures continued to oblige operators to disconnect unregistered SIM cards.
Companies mentioned in this report:
Nigerian Telecommunications (Nitel, Pentascope, Transcorp), Globacom, VGC Communications, Nepskom Communications, MTS First Wireless, Suburban Telecom, Backbone Connectivity Network (BCN), Traffic Network Services, Fibre Tech West Africa, Phase3 Telecom, Gateway Telecoms Integrated Services, Mobitel Nigeria, Prestel (O-Mobile), Galaxy Backbone, 21st Century Technologies, Main One (Mainstreet Technologies), NigComSat, O3b Networks, WASACE, Linkserve, Pinet Informatics, Odu’a Telecom, Swift Networks, Startech Connection, Netcom Africa, MWEB Nigeria, Starcomms, Layer3, Communication Trends Nigeria, Entertainment Highway (HiTV), MTN Nigeria, Bharti Airtel (formerly Zain, Celtel), 9Mobile (Etisalat Nigeria, EMTS, Mubadala), Econet Wireless, Vodacom.
Companies (Major Players)
Mobile & Wireless Broadband and Media
Mobile Communications (voice and infrastructure)
Regulations & Government Policies
Strategies & Analyses (Industry & Markets)
Number of pages 101
Last updated 12 Feb 2018
Analyst: Henry Lancaster
As you know, I have resigned from the Labor Ministry and have decided not to re-contest the seat of Charlton at the next election – both for personal reasons.
Before leaving Parliament, I particularly wish to record my thanks to you for your generous and constructive participation in the deliberations that generated significant economic policy reforms for the Australian community. Continuous economic transformation is a key challenge that faces all Governments.
The development of sound public policy should always be contestable. Ultimately, good and equitable outcomes are not concessions to any particular interest group, but the careful balancing of interests to create the greatest possible benefit for the nation. You have contributed to that, and I sincerely thank you for it.
Greg Combet, Former Minister for Climate Change, Industry and Innovation
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