Feeds

France Telecom to reveal debt-reduction plans

Protected jobs limit options

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

France Telecom SA will today reveal its plan to reduce its debt burden in a move that will have big implications for carriers across Europe. The company will be shored up short-term by a 9bn euro ($8.9bn) cash injection from the French government. This will be done via an arms-length organization designed to create the fiction that this is not a blatant case of the state bailing out a failed company.

New chairman Thierry Breton, who got the job on the strength of his record in turning round Thomson Multimedia, faces more formidable problems this time. While France Telecom may be able to use its political clout to persuade the European Union not to block a state subsidy, it faces greater problem in persuading the EU to accept a delay in the 3G roll-out.

This is essential for France Telecom's future as its Orange SA mobile arm has been responsible for creating much of its 70bn euro ($69.3bn) debt pile. Spending billions more on a technology yet to prove itself would be ludicrous in the current climate.

While government may not be sympathetic, carriers would welcome a breathing space before they have to invest in 3G and have been lobbying the EU to try and get it to force governments to accept a more relaxed timescale.

The biggest problem facing Breton comes from his own workforce. Not only is the 140,000 on its payroll excessive, but also about 108,000 have civil service status which protects their jobs. Unions have suggested that 45,000 jobs would go - based on the number of staff approaching 55 years of age who could take early requirement.

If France Telecom is to develop sufficient cash from its operations to cut debt then the workforce must be cut substantially. Again Breton may have to turn to the French government for the resources to make job cuts palatable.

© ComputerWire

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
PwC says US biz lagging in Internet of Things
Grass is greener in Asia, say the sensors
Ofcom sees RISE OF THE MACHINE-to-machine cell comms
Study spots 9% growth in IoT m2m mobile data connections
O2 vs Vodafone: Mobe firms grab for GCHQ, gov.uk security badge
No, the spooks love US best, say rival firms
Ancient pager tech SMS: It works, it's fab, but wow, get a load of that incoming SPAM
Networks' main issue: they don't know how it works, says expert
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.