The Orange brand celebrates its 25th anniversary

25 years, 27 countries, 264 million customers worldwide… and a unique brand! With an identity that is locally relevant yet globally appealing: the Orange brand has always been straightforward, honest and friendly. Let’s look back over the first quarter of a century to find out how the Orange brand has always put people before technology.  

From its launch in the UK to the 65th most valuable brand in the world*

The Orange brand story starts in the UK. At the beginning of the 1990s, Hutchison Whampoa, which owned a network called Rabbit, sent Hans Snook over to the UK from Hong Kong to close it down as it was losing money. However, he had a different idea, as he sensed people wanted a personal communications company that could make mobile phones simple and accessible, for everyone. He convinced the board to give the network a fresh start and a new identity, and Orange was launched on 28 April 1994.

In 2000, the France Télécom group acquired Orange along with several other international companies, progressively rebranding them to Orange. The brand has many assets, not least its global appeal. In France, Wanadoo and Ma Ligne TV became Orange in 2006 and in 2013 the Group even changed its corporate name to Orange.

The result? A unique brand that has been able to gain its customers’ trust in 27 countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and in 220 countries and territories through Orange Business Services. The Orange brand is one of the four most valuable French brands in the world according to the 2018 BrandZ™ Top 100. It’s also the brand that recorded the best international growth in the telecoms market. 

A pioneering brand focused on people not technology

Since the beginning, Orange has always communicated not just about technology but how people can use it. This was a pioneering positioning at the time, coupled with a range of innovative services (per-second billing, rollover minutes, caller ID etc). Today, technology use is accelerating and demanding even greater connectivity so we’re doing what we can to guarantee high quality, high volume services to customers through ever more efficient network infrastructure (whether fixed, mobile, terrestrial or submarine).

Our high-performing networks have enabled us to strengthen our service portfolio across a wider range of industries: content (TV, cinema, series, music, video games), mobile financial services, cybersecurity, health, education, energy and more. As the Group diversifies into these new business activities, they all share the same objective: connecting what’s essential in our customers’ lives. This promise is embodied in our brand signature, “It’s all about what matters to you”.

We want the Orange brand to convey a sense of modernity, energy, innovation, trust and focus on the future and on customers.
Stéphane Richard

A set of inclusive, human values at its heart

When Orange launched in the UK in the 1990s it did so with a set of simple, human values to make technology more accessible, and this core DNA has been the secret to our success, as we have continued to grow in all of our operating countries around the world. Orange has proved to be a brand whose name, vision and identity can cross cultural and language barriers, helping us to meet some major societal challenges along the way.

In a world where new technologies are becoming more prevalent, being unable to access the internet or read and write is a form of exclusion. That’s why we’re doing what we can to make digital technology more accessible, make it easier to use and also help people stay safe online. We also try to ensure that we develop ways for everyone to be able to make the most of the digital world, because only then can we drive both individual and collective transformation. This is the meaning behind our Human Inside philosophy, which guides us in everything we do.

Orange has always been first and foremost a human brand 

1994 – Orange: The future's bright – the future's Orange
1999 - France Télécom: Nous allons vous faire aimer l’an 2000
2002 – Wanadoo: Positive Génération
2011 – Orange: Today changes with Orange
2017 – Orange: It’s all about what matters to you 


* BrandZ™ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands 2018