Message from Stéphane Richard
What we call the “digital transformation” is sometimes hard to fully grasp, because this phenomenon is at the same time incredibly spectacular and extremely normal. It is spectacular because we have seen unprecedented progress in our technological capabilities in less than 15 years when measured in terms of computing power, network coverage and bandwidth, the volume of information produced and transported or the number of applications invented – plus the many advances that not too long ago seemed to fall into the realm of science fiction. And yet this transformation seems completely normal, because today you can slip the digital revolution into your pocket with a smartphone, and because so many changes go unnoticed as part of our everyday lives while ushering in a world of instant communication and access to continually richer and convergent content.
Our Group thus finds itself at the intersection of two intimately linked dimensions: the technology that drives the digital revolution and, of course, the human dimension. Orange has a pivotal role to play in this transformation, in particular when it comes to the proliferation of new uses made possible by this revolution. Because while technology is by definition neutral, the meaning we choose to give technology is not. We have made a clear choice at Orange. Thanks to our legacy business as a telecom operator, our history, the expertise of our teams and our investments, we believe we can make an essential contribution to ensure that these changes positively impact our world.
In 2015 this choice led to the launch of our Essentials2020 strategy, which revolves around listening and openness. Our approach aims to understand and anticipate the expectations and needs of our stakeholders and better meet them in conducting our business as an operator, and in fulfilling our responsibilities as an employer and a company with deep roots in a diverse array of geographies, communities and cultures.
We have also chosen to focus on what is essential to our customers – their family, home, work, fun and wellbeing – in order to bring them an incomparable experience. To do this we are concentrating on five key drivers. By offering enriched connectivity we are focusing on our core business to serve more people with increasingly powerful networks. By reinventing the customer relationship, Orange creates a distinctive difference by bringing customers an experience that is continually improved at every touchpoint, whether digital or physical. At the same time we are building an employer model that combines digital advances with a human approach to sustainably improve both the performance of the company and the fulfilment of our employees. We are supporting the digital transformation of our corporate customers too, becoming a trusted partner by providing them with digital solutions in addition to connectivity. Lastly, we are diversifying by capitalizing on our assets as we move into promising new areas such as connected objects or mobile financial services to offer our customers a steady stream of innovative services. More broadly, we want all our different initiatives to contribute to new and more equitable business models.
Throughout 2015, the employees of Orange created dynamic momentum across a digital enterprise that is both efficient and responsible, achieving success that is reflected in our results for the year.
These results are detailed in this first ever “integrated” annual report. It covers our financial results, as well as our corporate social responsibility performance. Companies such as ours are now evaluated, including by financial analysts, from a broader perspective that includes not only financial figures, but also respect for the ethical rules that guide our business practices. We are pursuing the ambitious objectives of our Essentials2020 plan on the strength of another year of revenue growth on a comparable basis, stable restated EBITDA that is a year ahead of our previously announced target, and an optimized portfolio of assets, reflecting the divestment of EE in the United Kingdom and the acquisition of Jazztel in Spain, coupled with continued development in Africa and the Middle East. With robust fundamentals and a clear vision, Orange is steadily keeping to our roadmap for 2020 and we are on track to generate a virtuous circle of value creation, with balanced distribution among all stakeholders. This is how we mark our distinctive difference, by enabling more and more people to benefit each day from an incomparable digital experience, and by making sure this human and technological revolution accelerates progress for everyone.