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MNP in Ghana – Vodafone gets 50 per cent of ported numbers

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Barely one month into Mobile Number Portability (MNP) in Ghana and Vodafone Ghana has already taken a huge lead with almost 50 per cent of ported numbers flowing its way.

Head of Corporate Communications at Vodafone Ghana said there is a restriction releasing actual figures of ported numbers to any network “but at least I can tell you we have almost 50 per cent of the total figure of ported numbers right now.”

This was confirmed by a highly placed source at the National Communications Authority (NCA), who said as at the time of collating the successfully ported number on Sunday July 31, 2011, Vodafone had almost 50 per cent of ported numbers so no other network could have had more.

The NCA said operators were not allowed to publish actual figures and certain information about MNP, but it was fair for Vodafone to claim to be in the lead because “that is the fact.”

The NCA reported that in 25 days, there were 21,059 successful ports, but the NCA has said it would not publish network-by-network figures.

Vodafone Ghana CEO, Kyle Whitehill was one of two telecoms CEOs who embraced MNP and said it would increase competition, quality service provision and change the market share structure eventually.

Other telecom executives rubbished MNP as a system that would cause a very insignificant change in the market structure in terms of subscriber numbers, but Mr. Whitehill believed MNP would change the structure in operator earnings because more high value customers would be porting than low spenders would.

Vodafone was first to announce it was absorbing porting fees, was also the first to announce its welcome package to new customers.
Subscriber numbers report from the NCA indicates that between January and June, 2011 Vodafone’s subscriber base grew consistently month-on-month from 2,810,487 at January ending to 3,426,095 at June ending.

Meanwhile the NCA said it was closely monitoring MNP process to correct problems that subscribers may face or were facing.

So far NCA’s analysis of data for the month of July showed 10% of porting requests were completed in 15 minutes or less, 23 percent were completed between 15 minutes and one hour, 34% in one to four hours, 31% in four to 24 hours, and two per cent were completed in more than 24 hours.

“The fastest port recorded so far in Ghana took place in a one minute, 10 seconds and the average port took place in five hours, 21 minutes from start to finish,” the NCA said, adding that the figures indicated that the MNP was going on smoothly.

Vodafone is the third largest mobile network in Ghana with a subscriber base of 3,426,095 as at June 30, 2011, with the additional figures from MNP the company’s subscriber base is obviously continuing its consistent growth at an increasing rate.

By Samuel Dowuona

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