The total value of transfers and transaction on mobile money services for the nine months to September 2014 increased by about 36 percent to $403 million from $296 million recorded in the previous quarter.
Latest statistics released by the Postal and Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe for the third quarter of 2014 show that the number of agents for the period increased by a record 4 181 as mobile operators sought to increase their distribution networks for the mobile money services.
Zimbabwe’s active mobile subscriber base grew by 2,6 percent to reach 11,4 million from 11,1 million subscribers recorded in the previous quarter. Total number of mobile money transfer subscriptions for the period under review grew 16,3 percent to 4,9 million subscribers.
According to the report mobile network operators’ revenues grew nine percent to about $247 million for the period while total investment grew 10 percent to record about $47 million from about $31 million recorded in the previous quarter.
NetOne which one of the largest competitors to Econet led the list on the back of its Chinese deal as subscribers grew 13,8 percent to about three million.
Econet subscribers increased 2,1 percent to more than six million while Telecel subscribers recorded 7,4 percent to more than two million.
Due to the decline in active subscriptions Telecel lost market share by 2,1 percent to reach 19,5 percent from 21,6 percent market share recorded in the previous quarter.
Eventually Telecel recorded the least market share in the period. NetOne increased its market share to 24 percent during the same period.
36 percent of total subscribers were inactive in the period under review with Telecel having the highest rate of inactive subscribers at 53 percent.
According to the report an active mobile subscriber is defined as a subscriber who has used the network at least once in the last three months. Short Message Sending (SMS) recorded nose dived for the quarter under review with cross network traffic declining 9,8 percent to 120 692 252 while net-on-net SMS declined by 0,2 percent to 977 681 607.
The report, however, states that the decline has been due to an increased use of messaging platforms such as Whatsapp and Facebook.
Net-on-net traffic declined 8,8 percent to 1 091 120 356 despite the numerous on-net promotions on the market.
Outbound roaming traffic also declined 9,4 percent to 205 858. A comparison with the interconnection traffic for the mobile operators in the previous quarter showed that Econet gained market share by 3,2 percent to 63 percent.
On the other hand Telecel and NetOne lost market share by 1,8 percent and 1,4 percent respectively.
The total active fixed lines in the period increased by 4,4 percent to 340 852 from 326 576 recorded in the previous quarter.
Fixed telephone subscriptions have been on an upward trend since December 2013, driven by ADSL. The fixed teledensity was 2,6 percent up from 2,5 percent recorded in June 2014.
The number of 2G base stations increased by an 75 additional; hence the number of 2G base stations increased from 3 209 to 3 284 in the quarter under review.