In Brief

Safaricom declares interim divided despite Ethiopia drag

Safaricom have declared a dividend of Kes0.58 per ordinary share, or an equivalent of Sh23.24 billion in total payment, despite stepping up investment in Ethiopia where the telco’s network coverage has hit a potential customer base of 10 percent of the population or roughly 11 million people.

The interim divided which was 9.4 percent lower than the Kes25.6 billion paid last year is in line with lower profits of Kes33.5 billion that declined over a similar margin weighed down by the heavy investment in Ethiopia.

Safaricom Ethiopia has been struggling since its launch, taking up huge capital expenditure with no profits to show. The subsidiary has rolled out 847 network sites in 25 cities, and onboarded 28,000 retailers, 103 distributor shops, and 5,000 acquisition agents

The dividend may boost investor confidence ahead of announcing full dividends for the full year ending March after the company stock lost ground to Kes23 from Kes25.5 last year.

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