Orange launches €2.6bn fibre business in co-investment with European investors

Orange launches €2.6bn fibre business in co-investment with European investors

Stephane Richard Orange.jpg

Orange has confirmed that it has partnered French investors to launch Orange Concessions, a brand-new entity in national fibre-to-the-home (FTTH).

Orange has formed this exclusivity agreement with La Banque des Territoires (Caisse des Dépôts), CNP Assurances (CNP) and EDF Invest, for a 50% share and co-control of Orange Concessions.

“I am delighted that Orange, Europe’s leader in fibre roll-out, is now set to establish this partnership in its domestic market with recognized investors who share our vision of digital communication infrastructure development,” said Stéphane Richard (pictured), chairman & CEO of Orange.

“Through this partnership, Orange holds the means to pursue the development of fibre in rural areas, by winning new public initiative networks or by participating in market consolidation. This is a key milestone in the delivery of our Engage 2025 strategic plan. As to its financial merits, the achieved valuation reveals the value of Orange’s investments in fibre as well as the relevance of such strategic move.”

The company assets will include 23 public initiative networks (PIN) representing over 4.5 million built or to-be-built plugs, it will also manage fibre networks rolled out and operated on behalf of local public authorities.

The networks operated by Orange Concessions on behalf of local public authorities are neutral and therefore open to all operators. In addition, fibre roll-out and maintenance will continue to be performed by Orange.

The news comes in line with its Engage 2025 strategic plan, giving Orange the ability to bolster its development in rural fibre.

The transition will also enable Orange Concessions to maximise growth opportunities and support its ambitions in public initiative networks while sharing required investment.

Valuing Orange Concessions at €2.675 billion, the deal is expected to close by end 2021.

In related news, earlier this month Orange confirmed that its capacity on the Dunant cable is now ready for service and that it is partnering on the AMITIÉ cable that is due to go live in Q1 2022. 

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