French economy minister says “time not right” for consolidation

Emmanuel Macron, France’s economy minister, said the country’s operators should think less about consolidation and more about investment. “In France the sector has reached a point of equilibrium,” he said in an interview with French daily Les Echos. “Time is …

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Orange CEO: Talk of more price cuts is “insane”

Stephane Richard, the CEO of Orange, forecast an end to the price war in France which has taken a toll on the country’s operators and their margins. “In France we have among the lowest prices in the world for both …

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Arcep paves way for France’s 700MHz allocation

France’s communications regulator, Arcep, published details of a public consultation on “spectrum for superfast mobile”, which included an update on the availability of 700MHz spectrum for operators in the country. In a briefing document, it said that assigning 700MHz frequencies …

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VimpelCom CEO resigns; former SFR boss appointed

Amsterdam-based operator VimpelCom said its Group CEO Jo Lunder (pictured) has decided to resign his position with effect from April 13, 2015 but will continue to serve as an advisor until July. He will be replaced by Jean-Yves Charlier, who …

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Altice set to buy Numericable-SFR stake from Vivendi

Altice made a bid to acquire the 20 per cent stake in its French business (Numericable-SFR) held by Vivendi for €3.9 billion. Vivendi became a shareholder in the company when Altice acquired SFR, the integrated operator it previously owned. It …

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Altice again eyeing Bouygues – report

Ambitious telecoms player Altice is reportedly again looking at a deal to acquire France’s number-three operator Bouygues Telecom, reigniting the consolidation game in the market. According to Bloomberg, Altice is examining the potential financial and regulatory obstacles to a deal, which …

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Orange CEO says French consolidation could follow EE sale

Stephane Richard, the chairman and CEO of Orange (pictured), said that the French group will look at opportunities for consolidation in its home market after it closes a deal to sell EE, its joint venture with Deutsche Telekom, to BT. …

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France sets date for 700MHz auction, targets proceeds of €2B-plus

An auction of frequencies in the 700MHz band is scheduled for late next year in France, with Free, the country’s latest entrant, tipped to lead bids for the 4G-friendly spectrum. The auction was announced by French prime minister Manuel Valls, …

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Altice completes SFR acquisition, gets thumbs up for Virgin buy

French cable group Altice has completed its acquisition of mobile operator SFR from Vivendi for €13.66 billion. Meanwhile ARCEP, the French telecoms regulator has given the go-ahead for Altice to also acquire Virgin Mobile France.