Shameel Joosub, Vodacom Group CEO commented:
During the third quarter Vodacom Group celebrated a number of key milestones including Vodacom Mozambique’s 20-year anniversary, the trialing of 5G in the DRC and the announcement of Project Kuiper, a strategic collaboration with Amazon’s low Earth orbit satellite (LEO) communications initiative.
Having operated in Mozambique for two decades, its anniversary highlights the contribution Vodacom has made to digital and financial inclusion in the country and more broadly across our footprint. A prime example of this impact across our footprint is in our financial services business, which connects more than 75 million customers and facilitates $1.1 billion a day in mobile money transaction value. Project Kuiper adds to our satellite partnerships that will extend the reach of 4G and 5G services to more of our customers in Africa and in particular in areas that may otherwise be operationally challenging or prohibitively expensive to serve via traditional fibre or microwave solutions.
Vodacom Group, including Safaricom, has now reached the 200 million customer mark for the first time, having reached 100 million customers in 2018. As a purpose-led company, the transformational impact we have on our customers and the economies in countries where we operate provides a strong foundation upon which we are able to ensure sustainable growth of our businesses.
Boosted by our acquisition of Vodafone Egypt, where revenue growth continues to accelerate, Group revenue increased 26.8% during the quarter to R38.9 billion. On a pro-forma basis, which includes Egypt as if it was owned from 1 April 2022, revenue growth was 9.6%. In Egypt, local currency revenue growth of 31.5% was underpinned by a strong performance from our mobile data, fixed and financial services, including a 40.7% improvement in data traffic. In South Africa, we delivered satisfactory revenue growth of 4.0% considering the strong comparative as a result of heightened loadshedding in the prior year quarter.
Across our International business segment it was pleasing to see that our network investment contributed to a 25.4% increase in 4G sites, which ultimately supported an acceleration of local currency revenue growth. As we combine network investment with our focus on digital inclusion and pioneering handset financing and rural coverage models, we expect these will unlock further meaningful growth opportunities across our eight markets.
Revenue from new services - financial and digital services, fixed and IoT - is well on track to reach our target contribution of 25-30% over the medium-term. In the quarter, the contribution of new service revenue exceeded 20% for the first time, equating to R6.2 billion. Financial services remains the largest component of new services having grown 31.0% to R3.4 billion in the quarter, largely on the back of scaling new products and strong customer growth of 12.0%.
We remain Africa’s largest mobile money platform by transaction value processed, with a value of close to US$100 billion in the quarter. Our super-app roll-out across the footprint remains a major focus for the Group. In South Africa, VodaPay reached 4.8 million registered users, with our summer campaign driving strong user engagement on the platform.
Looking ahead, we are fully alert to the financial constraints on customers caused by the high cost of living and remain committed to delivering innovations that enhance the value we deliver to customers to help alleviate cost of living pressures. We are also mindful of an evolving macro-economic environment across our footprint, including foreign exchange rate risk, and expect that our business model will continue to demonstrate its resilience.
Longer term, we will relentlessly pursue our purpose of connecting people for a better future. I firmly believe that the continued execution of our strategy has the potential to create immense economic value in the markets where we operate, which in turn will help address inequality. In particular, we will continue to drive access to smartphones, financial services, healthcare and education to every person across our markets.