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France Telecom hits targets, admits crisis

New boss, fewer deaths

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France Telecom now has 193m customers and made revenues of €46bn in the year ended 31 December 2009, down 1.9 per cent on last year.

The figures exclude FT's UK business, Orange, which is now in the process of merging with T-Mobile.

Total customer numbers grew 5.7 per cent with best growth for its digital TV business - up 53 per cent to 3.2m subscribers.

Net income for the group was €4.85bn on margin of 35.5 per cent. FT will pay a dividend of €1.4 per share with the remaining €0.8 paid 17 June 2010.

Outgoing chief executive Didier Lombard thanked staff for their efforts.

Incoming chief executive Stephane Richard thanked Lombard for taking France Telecom from a national monopoly to "a robust multi-national, with... 180,000 staff in 32 countries."

Richard said: "It is an outstanding group blessed with many excellent qualities, even as it faces a crisis of confidence in France." The group hit its targets, so presumably the crisis of confidence refers to staff problems.

Full statement here. ®

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