French telecom behemoth Orange ORAN recently received a major contract to supply and maintain a public fiber network from the Vendee department in Western France. The 12-year project will receive an initial investment of €90 million (over $100 million) from the European Union’s regional development fund. All ISPs (Internet Service Providers) will be able to access this network.
Orange aims to provide 16,000 connections in 2017 which will rise to 64,000 by 2020. Finally this network will connect 70,000 households, businesses and public services departments. The company will install the FTTC (fiber-to-the-cabinet) network in 264 towns in the Vendee region. These networks will be eventually upgraded to the FTTH (fiber-to-the-home) standard.
Over 2015-2018, Orange has decided to invest a whopping Euro 15 billion (around $15.88 billion) on its existing networks in a bid to increase fixed and mobile data transmission speed by at least threefold. In Mar 2015, Orange revealed the details of its 5-year strategic project called “Essential2020”. Orange is jointly working with Huawei Technologies to revamp its IT business. The company’s efforts to overhaul its entire IT business are in sync with its “Essential2020” initiative.
Essential2020 will primarily focus on five operational aspects, the first being significantly increasing data transmission speed. Second, the company plans to enhance customer relationship. Third, the company will create an employee-centric digitalized management model. Fourth, it will work on a gradual transformation of enterprise customers toward its IT-based services. Fifth, it will look to diversify its assets into telecom related activities, such as, mobile financial services.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Orange carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the non-U.S. telecom industry include NTT DOCOMO Inc. DCM, Ceragon Networks Ltd. CRNT and Mobile TeleSystems PJSC MBT. All three stocks currently carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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