Orange is reported to be making a bold move into mobile banking by entering exclusive negotiations with Groupama to buy up to 65% of the insurer’s banking unit.
France’s biggest telecoms operator, which has more than 28m customers, said the talks would allow it to push
Once established, the proposed lender, which will offer standard banking in addition to savings, loans and insurance services, would then enter other European markets such as Spain or Belgium.
As part of its strategic review last year, Stephane Richard, Orange’s chairman and chief executive, said the group aimed to achieve €400m in revenues from financial services by 2018.
The group already offers financial services in the Middle East and Africa via Orange Money and, more recently, with the launch of Orange Finanse in Poland.
In a statement, Mr Richard said the partnership with Groupama would “enable us to accelerate the implementation of our strategic ambition to be able to offer our customers Orange Bank services in France from the beginning of 2017”.
Thierry Martel, chief executive of Groupama, said: “Orange’s technological leadership and the ubiquity of mobile phones will enable us to move forwards, faster and further, to create a bank that factors in all the possibilities and the fluidity that is inherent in today’s technology.”
Orange said it intended to apply its digital expertise to develop a 100 per cent mobile banking offering to cater to its customers’ changing habits. The telecoms company and Groupama also intend to leverage their high street networks. Orange has about 850 stores in France.
The push comes as Orange discusses the possibility of acquiring Bouygues Telecom, France’s third-largest mobile operator, in a tie-up that would transform the country’s telecoms sector, reducing the number of players from four to three.
On Tuesday morning, Orange confirmed that it was in preliminary talks with the Bouygues Group “with a view to a consolidation with Bouygues Telecom”.
The post Orange moves into mobile banking as it looks to acquire Groupama appeared first on Payments Cards & Mobile.