JOHANNESBURG Oct 25 Africa's largest
telecommunications company, MTN Group, on Thursday
reported a near 4 percent increase in subscribers in the third
quarter and lifted its guidance for new users this year.
MTN said it expected to add 23.7 million new customers this
year, up from its previous expectation of 21.25 million.
Subscribers rose to 182.7 million across its 21 operations
in Africa and the Middle East. Earnings in Iran would be
affected by the local foreign exchange depreciation, it said on
MTN added 5,500 new subscribers in Iran over the three
months to September, followed by 4,000 in Nigeria.
Irancell is MTN's third-biggest operation but the company
has be unable to repatriate its earnings because of U.S.
sanctions against the Middle Eastern country.
The company is also facing a $4.2 billion U.S. lawsuit filed
by Turkish rival Turkcell pertaining to alleged
malfeasance when acquiring the Irancell licence in 2005.
MTN shares are up 1.5 percent at 153.36 rand as of 0823 GMT,
and are up over 12 percent in the last six months.
(Reporting by Helen Nyambura-Mwaura; editing by David Dolan)