Gervais Pellissier, Orange Group’s executive director in charge of European operations, has disclosed that smaller European telcos, including Telecom Italia (TI), KPN of the Netherlands and Belgium’s Belgacom, might be an acquisition target for the telecoms giant in a future round of consolidation in the European telecoms business, the Financial Times reports. The executive was cited as saying: ‘In the next five years, there will be inter-country or intra-European consolidation. Players who are today playing on a single market or near to a single market, might be purchased by those who are bigger’, adding: ‘For sure, one of those might be a target for us.’
As previously reported by CommsUpdate in March 2015, Orange’s CEO Stephane Richard revealed that his company was interested in a possible alliance with TI, adding that a prospective deal would be an attractive European consolidation opportunity. ‘There are no negotiations ongoing, just exchanges of points of view between the two management teams,’ the executive was cited as saying. While an Orange representative reportedly confirmed the remarks, a spokesperson for TI said there had been neither talks nor an ‘exchange of views’ with the French company.