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Orange seals the deal in Romania

French telecoms group Orange has completed its acquisition of a controlling stake Telekom Romania Communications (TKR).

The deal was first announced almost a year ago and has spent the intervening time on the desks of the kind of people who like to give things like this a second look. Less than a year isn’t a bad turnaround for anything that might involve the EU so it must have been a fairly open-and-shut case. Perhaps one of the reasons is that the Romanian state remains the minority shareholder.

Orange already owned 9% of TKR and acquired 45% more from Greek company OTE for €268 million, thus valuing the whole thing at around €500 million. TKR is Romania’s second largest fixed-line operator, so now Orange can combine it with its number one position in mobile to live the convergent dream. TKR’s MVNO deal with Telekom Romania Mobile will be scrapped and its subscribers lobbed onto Orange whether the like it or not.

Current CEO of Orange Romania, Liudmila Climoc, will stay in charge of the enlarged operation. “We are part of a defining moment not only for Orange, but for the entire telecoms market in Romania,” she said. “I am very proud that Orange Romania and TKR teams have reached this point. We now move forward together, as a joint force and with a common goal – to be the first choice for convergent services in Romania.

“Together, we will build for our customers a complete offer with extended fixed coverage, mobile services from Orange, including expanding 5G coverage, more varied TV content and ICT solutions that support the digital transformation of businesses and public administrations.”

“Today is a landmark day for Orange as this acquisition will propel Orange Romania forward in its convergence ambitions,” said Mari-Noëlle Jégo-Laveissière, Deputy CEO in charge of Orange in Europe. “Convergence is the key to our growth across Europe, and Romania is a key part of the Group’s European success story.”

Orange will be elaborating on its cunning plan for Europe next week, so watch this space.


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