FRANCE TELECOM TARGETS RURAL AFRICA
FT writes France Telecom is planning rapid expansion in fast-growing African and Middle Eastern markets. The company laid out plans for building networks, recruiting low-income rural customers and providing mobile Internet services via the Orange brand, hoping to double its regional revenue. Through a wide range of services such as E-Recharge, which accounts for 80 percent of sales in Côte d’Ivoire, and network investments including underwater cables to Africa, France Telecom says it is targeting organic growth. “The principal focus is the development of our own networks where there is huge growth potential,” said Jean-Paul Cottet, marketing director for the region. CEO Stéphane Richard said earlier this year, however, that up to two-thirds of the new revenue the company has targeted for the region by 2015 would come from acquisitions, concludes FT.