Mobile communications company Vodacom on Thursday reported 4.2 percent revenue growth to R21.5 billion and a 3.9 percent increase to R17.4 billion. Photographer: Nadine Hutton/Bloomberg

JOHANNESBURG  - Mobile communications company Vodacom on Thursday reported 4.2 percent revenue growth to R21.5 billion and a 3.9 percent increase to R17.4 billion in service revenue for the quarter ended June 30.

In a trading update, Vodacom said it added 608,000 customers in South Africa and 560,000 customers in international operations, up 5.3 percent.

South Africa service revenue however declined 1.2 percent to R12.6 billion, negatively impacted by the proactive reduction in out-of-bundle data rates, data usage regulations and the transition between national roaming partners.

Growth from the international portfolio offset the anticipated slower performance in South Africa, which was impacted by new data usage regulations, significant data price cuts and a subdued economy weighing on consumer spend.

The company was encouraged by President Cyril Ramaphosa’s commitment made at a recent summit to award new spectrum, Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub said.

"This is a vital part of reducing input costs and further bringing down data prices in South Africa, where lengthy delays in completing the digital migration and allocating 4G spectrum has curbed the pace at which data prices could have fallen," he said.

"Clear policy direction for the country’s telecommunications industry is also expected to restore investor confidence in South Africa and boost economic growth."

Vodacom said it expected to conclude the acquisition of the M-Pesa brand and platform and together with the recent launch of VodaPay, to further enhance the performance of its financial services business.

- African News Agency (ANA)