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Mobile money, data service pays off for Econet

Mobile money, data service pays off for Econet

Zimbabwe telco Econet Wireless has raised its dividend for the nine-month period to the end of November 2017 to US$50 million.

This comes after the company on Wednesday declared a 0.93 cents dividend per share for the quarter period to the end of the same month.

"The company has declared a dividend of 0.93 cents per share dividend for the third quarter ended 30 November 2017. The total dividend declared for the nine months ended 30 November 2017 now stands at $50 million, equivalent to $1.90 cents per share," Econet Wireless said in a dividend notice on Wednesday.

The company's financial year ends today and it will present its final financials by the end of May, in line with Zimbabwe Stock Exchange requirements.

Analysts at the ZSE say the company's financials for the year to end February 2018 are expected to cement growing usage of mobile money and diversifying revenue streams into data.

"Obviously mobile money and data will be key points for the company owing to difficulties in foreign currency and cash availability in the economy. Data has been rising over the years and we expect the trend to continue," said a trader on the ZSE on Wednesday morning.

Econet competes against state owned NetOne and Telecel Zimbabwe, both of which continue to push their own mobile money and data offerings.

The company says it will pay the dividend for the quarter to end November on March 21 while the last date to trade has been fixed for 13 March 2018.

It further added that "withholding tax" for the quarterly dividend payment will be deducted at 10%. Payments "to foreign shareholders will be subject to exchange control approval and payment guidelines for foreign remittances".

Forex shortages in Zimbabwe have occasioned delayed profit and dividend payments to international shareholders and this has affected other bigger companies in the country.

"Foreign shareholders should appoint or make their own arrangements with a local bank of their choice to receive dividend on their behalf and to facilitate remittance to them," Econet added.

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