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Orange Sets Continuously Improving Objectives; Reaffirms Strategy

Orange (ORAN) announced the company targets growth in adjusted EBITDA of around 2% in 2017, followed by an acceleration of the growth rate in 2018 and continued growth in 2019 and 2020. The company also plans for a return to growth in operating cash flow (adjusted EBITDA minus CAPEX) in 2017, followed by an acceleration of the growth rate in 2018 and continued growth in 2019 and 2020. The Group also confirmed the annual payment of a dividend of at least 0.65 euros per share for the years 2017 to 2020.

As the Group reached the halfway point in its Essentiels2020 plan, Orange reaffirmed its strategy. The Group's strategy seeks to leverage targeted investments that aim to reinforce the excellence of its networks and offer enriched services.

The Group said the deployment of fibre in France is now ahead of schedule allowing Orange to plan for 20 million FTTH connectable households in high-density and medium-density areas by 2021, rather than 2022. In Spain, Orange will reach 16 million FTTH connectable households in 2020 rather than the 14 million households that were initially planned and that will in fact be achieved as soon as 2018.

The Group said its operational efficiency plan, Explore 2020, has enabled Orange to improve its cost and investment structure, surpassing the 3 billion euros of gross savings originally forecast for 2015-2018. Orange will continue these efforts over the 2019-2020 period. On the cost front, Orange will primarily use digitalisation, simplification and resource pooling to achieve additional gross savings of 1 billion euros over the 2019-2020 period.

The Group aims to reach a peak investment spend of 7.4 billion euros in 2018, before declining from 2019. Orange said it will use a lean CAPEX programme to reduce unit costs by 15%, generating savings of up to 1 billion euros by the end of 2020.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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