France Telecom changes name to Orange

The mobile operator will embrace the Orange branding globally, despite dropping it in the UK after merger with T-Mobile

Mobile operator France Telecom has announced it will be changing its name to Orange for all of its commercial operations.

The company said it had been working towards this simplification of its brand in France and its other businesses across the globe since 2006 and had been seeking approval from shareholders to make the change more permanent.

The move was agreed at its annual shareholder’s meeting on 28 May and will come into force from 1 July 2013.

“Under the Orange name, the group will build on its heritage and continue to ensure stronger social cohesion, improved technical performance and faster growth in France and around the world,” read a statement from the company.

Orange plays in fixed line and mobile spaces, along with TV, internet and business services. In the UK, however, the brand has taken a back seat following the firm’s merger with T-Mobile in 2010 to form new operator EE.

Many criticised the loss of the Orange brand, which had built up a strong reputation as a premium product thanks to added-value services such as Orange Wednesday. But its influence is still clear, with the operator headed up by previous France Telecom executive Olaf Swantee.

As well as the name change, the ticker name for the stock market will also be converted to ORA.

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