Monday, 10 March 2014

France Telecom to exit from African markets?

France Telecom (also known as Orange) is planning to exit several African markets where its "operations are weak", reports Business Daily Africa.

Orange Africa operations include Kenya, Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Guinea and Senegal.

According to reports by Daily Nation, news of a planned exit of France Telecom from the Africa market has ushered in an exciting period in the Kenya telecommunication market, coming shortly after announcement of the buy-out of yuMobile.

France Telecom holds a 70 per cent stake in Telkom Kenya, which operates mobile phone services under the Orange brand.

Denials

Orange Kenya CEO Mickael Ghossein has denied any knowledge of reported plans by parent company Orange France to exit Africa, Business Daily reported. TMT Finance had said that Orange, formerly France Telecom, was planning to leave several markets in Africa where its operations are weak.
The publication further said the French firm has appointed financial advisory firm Lazard to find a buyer for its mobile telecommunications business in Uganda, adding that next up for sale could be Orange Kenya, which has been struggling against larger rivals Safaricom and Airtel.

Ghossein told Business Daily he has no idea about the reports. Orange France owns 70 percent of Orange Kenya while the Treasury has a 30 percent stake. In its annual results announced on 06 March, the French parent reported growth in revenue at its African businesses, partly helping to offset a decline posted by its European operations

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