Press release

Paris, 23 February 2017

2016 full-year results                                       

Return to growth in revenues and adjusted EBITDA in 2016
Proposed increase in 2017 dividend to 0.65 euros

  • Commercial momentum remained strong in the 4th quarter, led by fibre (393,000 net additions) and retail convergent offers (239,000 net additions). There were 3.3 million fibre customers at 31 December 2016 (+75% year on year) and retail convergent offers counted 9.2 million customers (+10% year on year). The growth of mobile contracts[1] continued to be strong, with 620,000 net sales for the quarter (+5.3% year on year). 4G in Europe was up 58% year on year with 28.1 million customers at 31 December 2016. Orange Money had 28.9 million customers at that date.
  • Revenues were 40.918 billion euros in 2016, a 0.6% increase after falling 0.1% in 2015 and 2.5% in 2014 (on a comparable basis). In the 4th quarter of 2016, revenues rose 1.0% after rising 0.8% in the 3rd quarter and 0.3% in the 1st half. The improving trend continued, led by Europe (particularly Spain), although mobile services were still impacted by decreased revenues from national roaming in France and roaming price reductions in Europe.
  • The Group's adjusted EBITDA was 12.682 billion euros in 2016, an increase of 1.3% (+158 million euros) on a comparable basis, in line with the objective of a higher adjusted EBITDA in 2016 than in 2015. Adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities[2] (12.694 billion euros) rose 1.3% (+164 million euros). The adjusted EBITDA margin rate from telecoms activities was 31.0%, an improvement of 0.2 percentage points in relation to 2015.
  • Group operating income was 4.077 billion euros in 2016, a decrease of 665 million euros compared with 2015. Operating income from telecoms activities was 3.992 billion euros, a decrease of 750 million euros. Orange Bank had operating income of 85 million euros in 20162
  • Net income was 3.263 billion euros in 2016, an increase of 10.3% compared to 2015 (+305 million euros). Net income attributable to equity owners of the Group was 2.935 billion euros in 2016, versus 2.652 billion euros in 2015.  
  • The Group's CAPEX (6.971 billion euros in 2016) increased 3.0% on a comparable basis. CAPEX related to telecoms activities (6.956 billion euros) rose 2.8% and was equivalent to 17% of revenues from telecoms activities (+0.4 percentage points compared with 2015). Investments in fibre were up while 4G and 4G+ deployment continued, in line with the goals of the Essentiels2020 strategic plan.
  • Net debt[3] was 24.444 billion euros at 31 December 2016, a reduction of 2.108 billion euros year on year, related in particular to the sale of EE in January 2016. The ratio of net financial debt to adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities was 1.93x at 31 December 2016 versus 2.01x one year earlier, in line with the objective of a ratio of about 2x in the medium term.

2017 outlook

Orange has set an objective for 2017 of adjusted EBITDA that is higher than the level achieved in 2016 on a comparable basis, lifted by the strong commercial momentum supported by CAPEX, and continuing efforts to transform the cost structure.
The Group maintains the objective of a ratio of net debt to adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities of about 2x in the medium term to preserve Orange's financial strength and investment capacity. Within this context, the Group is maintaining a policy of selective, value-creating acquisitions by concentrating on markets in which it is already present.
The Group confirms the payment of a dividend of 0.60 euros per share for 2016[4]. An interim dividend for 2016 of 0.20 euros per share was paid on 7 December 2016 and the balance of 0.40 euros per share will be paid on the 14 June[5].

The Board of Directors will propose to the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders in 2018 a dividend of 0.65 euros per share for 2017, and plans to pay an interim dividend for 2017 of 0.25 euros per share in December. This dividend increase of 5 euro cents reflects the improvement in the Group's profitability, begun in 2015 and clearly confirmed by the results of 2016. It is also an expression of the Group's confidence in the continuation of this momentum and the constant search for the right balance between funding investments necessary for the development of the Group's operations, sharing value with employees, and providing returns to shareholders.

*
*     *

Commenting on the 2016 results, Stéphane Richard, Chairman and CEO of Orange Group, said:

"In 2016, we are reaping the benefits of our strategy of differentiation through investment and customer experience with the return to growth in our revenues and EBITDA. This is due to the efforts of our employees who I would in particular like to thank.

Our investments are driving our commercial performance, led by very high speed fixed and mobile broadband and despite a level of competition that is intense and unprecedented, particularly in France. Our fibre customer base grew 75% with 3.3 million customers by the end of 2016 and our 4G customer base in Europe rose 58% with 28 million customers.

But they also enable us to improve the experience we offer our customers with, in particular, the opening of 136 new sites using our "Smart Store" concept. 

Lastly, the acquisitions made over the year have added to our geographical footprint in Africa and strengthened our Enterprise activities in IT and specialist services, particularly in cyber security.

The confirmation of an improving trend allows us to consider a redistribution of the value created with, for our shareholders, a proposed increase in the dividend for 2017, a year that will be key for the Group with the launch of Orange Bank during the first half."

Key figures

  • Full-year data
                 
    2016 2015 2015   change   change
In millions of euros   comparable basis historical basis   comparable basis   historical basis
                   
Revenues 40,918  40,669  40,236    0.6%   1.7%
Of which:              
  France 18,969  19,154  19,141    (1.0)%   (0.9)%
  Europe 10,541  10,288  9,963    2.4%   5.8 %
    Spain 5,014  4,731  4,253    6.0%   17.9 %
    Poland 2,644  2,710  2,831    (2.4)%   (6.6)%
    Belgium & Luxembourg 1,242  1,235  1,235    0.5%   0.5 %
    Central European countries 1,648  1,616  1,648    1.9%   (0.0)%
    Intra-Europe eliminations (7) (4) (4)    
  Africa & Middle East 5,245  5,110  4,899    2.6%   7.1 %
  Enterprise 6,398  6,351  6,405    0.7%   (0.1)%
  International Carriers & Shared Services 1,812  1,853  1,915    (2.2)%   (5.4)%
  Intra-Group eliminations (2,047) (2,087) (2,087)    
Adjusted EBITDA* 12,682  12,524  12,418    1.3%   2.1%
of which telecoms activities 12,694  12,530  12,418    1.3%   2.2%
  As % of revenues 31.0 % 30.8 % 30.9 %   0.2 pt   0.2 pt
  France 7,134  7,097  7,075    0.5%   0.8 %
  Europe 2,944  2,824  2,740    4.2%   7.5 %
    Spain 1,349  1,190  1,068    13.4%   26.4 %
    Poland 725  807  842    (10.2)%   (13.9)%
    Belgium & Luxembourg 316  276  276    14.4%   14.4 %
    Central European countries 554  551  554    0.6%   0.1 %
  Africa & Middle East 1,658  1,674  1,667    (1.0)%   (0.5)%
  Enterprise 1,014  939  932    8.0%   8.8 %
  International Carriers & Shared Services (56) (4)    
of which Orange Bank (12) (6)    
Operating Income 4,077    4,742        (14.0)%
of which telecoms activities 3,992    4,742        (15.8)%
of which Orange Bank 85         
Net income 3,263    2,958        10.3%
Net income attributable to equity owners of the Group 2,935    2,652        10.7%
CAPEX (excluding licences) 6,971  6,769  6,486    3.0%   7.5%
of which telecoms activities 6,956  6,769  6,486    2.8%   7.2%
  As % of revenues 17.0% 16.6% 16.1%   0.4 pt   0.9 pt
of which Orange Bank 15     
                   
      31 December 2016 31 December 2015          
                   
Net financial debt 24,444  26,552           
Ratio** of net financial debt / Adjusted EBITDA 1.93x 2.01x          

* EBITDA adjustments are described in appendix 6. Adjusted EBITDA is the new term for aggregate restated EBITDA; the definition of this indicator is unchanged.

** The method of calculating the adjusted ratio of net debt to Adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities is described in appendix 4.

·   Quarterly data

                 
    4th
quarter
4th
quarter
4th
quarter
  change comparable   change historical
      2016 2015 2015   basis   basis
In millions of euros   comparable basis historical basis        
                 
Revenues 10,516  10,411  10,395    1.0 %   1.2 %
Of which:              
  France 4,825  4,865  4,862    (0.8)%   (0.8)%
  Europe 2,742  2,623  2,618    4.5%   4.7%
    Spain 1,307  1,211  1,189    7.9%   9.9 %
    Poland 681  668  686    1.9%   (0.7)%
    Belgium & Luxembourg 322  323  323    (0.2)%   (0.2)%
    Central European countries 433  422  422    2.6%   2.7 %
    Intra-Europe eliminations (1) (1) (1)    
  Africa & Middle East 1,359  1,338  1,312    1.6%   3.6%
  Enterprise 1,642  1,643  1,657    (0.1)%   (0.9)%
  International Carriers & Shared Services 451  467  473    (3.3)%   (4.6)%
  Intra-Group eliminations (502) (525) (526)   -   -
Adjusted EBITDA* 3,172  3,032  3,067    4.6 %   3.4%
of which telecoms activities 3,184  3,039  3,067    4.8%   3.8%
  As % of revenues 30.3% 29.2% 29.5%   1.1 pt   0.8 pt
of which Orange Bank (12) (6)    
Operating Income 62    622       
of which telecoms activities** (23)   622       
of which Orange Bank 85         
CAPEX (excluding licenses) 2,238  2,273  2,252    (1.5)%   (0.6)%
of which telecoms activities 2,224  2,273  2,252    (2.2)%   (1.2)%
  As % of revenues 21.1% 21.8% 21.7%   (0.7)pt   (0.5)pt
of which Orange Bank 15     
                   

* EBITDA adjustments are described in appendix 6. Adjusted EBITDA is the new term for aggregate restated EBITDA; the definition of this indicator is unchanged.

** Operating income from telecoms activities of the 4th quarter of 2016 reflects impairment of goodwill and fixed assets in the total amount of 805 million euros, mainly related to Poland, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cameroon and Egypt.  

*

*        *

The Board of Directors of Orange SA met on 22 February 2017 and examined the Group's financial statements.

The Group's statutory auditors audited those financial statements, and the audit reports relative to their certification are in the process of being issued.

More detailed information is available on the Orange website: www.orange.com

Comments on key Group figures

Revenues

The Orange Group had revenues of 40.918 billion euros in 2016, an increase of 0.6% (+249 million euros) on a comparable basis[6] after the stabilisation observed in 2015 of -0.1% (-47 million euros). Fixed broadband services rose 5.2%, led by fibre and TV content in France and Spain, while mobile services increased 0.3% despite the impact of the reduction in revenues from national roaming in France and roaming price decreases in Europe.
In the 4th quarter of 2016, revenues were up 1.0% on a comparable basis, after rising 0.8% in the 3rd quarter and 0.3% in the 1st half.
In France, fixed broadband services continued their steady climb (+4.9% in the 4th quarter), led by fibre and TV content. Mobile services were down 4.6% due in particular to the downturn in national roaming.
In the Europe zone, revenue growth accelerated, rising 4.5% in the 4th quarter after increases of 2.8% in the 3rd quarter and 1.9% in the 2nd quarter:

  • in Spain, revenue growth remained strong (+7.9% in the 4th quarter after rising 7.8% in the 3rd quarter), led by both mobile and fixed services (fibre and TV content);
  • in Poland, revenues rose 1.9% in the 4th quarter, after declining 3.9% in the 3rd quarter, led by very strong mobile equipment sales;
  • Belgium & Luxembourg: mobile services rose 2.0% in the 4th quarter after falling 0.1% in the 3rd quarter. Fixed services increased 3.1% with the first effects following the marketing of convergent offers;
  • the Central European countries were up 2.6% in the 4th quarter after rising 0.8% in the 3rd quarter: the growth in Romania (+3.8%) and the recovery in Moldova (+6.3%) were partially offset by the downturn in Slovakia (-0.9%).   

In Africa and the Middle East, growth slowed to 1.6% in the 4th quarter linked to the decline in services to operators and less favourable conditions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In the Enterprise segment, IT and integration services rose 3.9% in the 4th quarter, following on from the 3rd quarter, led by security services (+26%) and the Cloud (+20%).

Customer base growth

In France, net additions of mobile contracts[7] remained strong (131,000 in the 4th quarter), both for Orange offers (63,000) and for Sosh (68,000), while growth in fibre accelerated with 145,000 net additions for the quarter. Fibre had a total of 1.452 million customers at 31 December 2016.
In Spain, commercial momentum remained strong both in fixed broadband, with 199,000 net fibre additions for the quarter (1.610 million customers at 31 December 2016), and in mobile contracts, with 177,000 net additions.
In Poland, the growth of mobile contracts accelerated with 368,000 net additions in the 4th quarter. For the full year 2016, the contract base was up an additional 1.092 million customers, after the addition of 683,000 customers in 2015. In Belgium, mobile contracts rose as in previous quarters.  
In Africa and the Middle East, the mobile customer base was 120.7 million at 31 December 2016. It included the contribution from Burkina Faso (5.9 million customers) and Sierra Leone (1.5 million customers), both consolidated in the 4th quarter. On a comparable basis, net quarterly additions gradually improved, with 208,000 additional customers in the 4th quarter following 96,000 added in the 3rd quarter. Orange Money had 28.9 million customers at 31 December 2016.
In all, the Group's mobile customer base was 201.7 million at 31 December 2016, an increase of 0.9% on a comparable basis. In particular, contracts (69.9 million customers) had sustained growth (+8.4% year on year), led by France and the Europe zone.
Fixed broadband (18.3 million customers) was up 3.5%. Fibre, with 3.3 million customers at 31 December 2016, grew very strongly (+74.9% year on year) and retail convergent offers counted 9.2 million customers (+10.2% year on year).
At the same time, TV services had a total of 8.5 million customers at 31 December 2016, compared with 7.9 million at 31 December 2015, a year-on-year increase of 6.9%.     

Adjusted EBITDA

The adjusted EBITDA of the Group was 12.682 billion euros in 2016, an increase of 1.3% (+158 million euros) on a comparable basis.
Adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities was 12.694 billion euros in 2016, an increase of 1.3% (+164 million euros) on a comparable basis. The adjusted EBITDA margin for telecoms activities was 31.0%, an improvement of 0.2 percentage points in relation to 2015.
In the 4th quarter of 2016, adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities was 3.184 billion euros, an increase of 4.8% on a comparable basis (+145 million euros) compared with the 4th quarter of 2015, and the adjusted EBITDA margin for telecoms activities was 30.3% (+1.1 percentage points).
The increase in adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities in the 4th quarter was tied to: revenue growth; a reduction in labour expenses (with the average number of full-time equivalent employees falling 2.8% in the quarter); the effects of the Explore2020 operational efficiency plan, in particular with the reduction in overheads and distribution costs; and increased revenue from asset disposals linked with the property optimisation plan. Interconnection costs, content costs and the purchase of equipment for customers increased to support the revenue growth.

Operating income

The Orange Group had operating income of 4.077 billion euros in 2016. This includes 85 million euros of operating income from the activities of Orange Bank.
Operating income from telecoms activities was 3.992 billion euros, a decrease of 750 million euros compared with 2015 (on an historical basis). This decrease is mostly tied to goodwill impairment of 772 million euros, asset impairment of 207 million euros (mainly concerning Poland, Egypt, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Cameroon), and to an increase of 263 million euros in amortisation and depreciation[8], partially offset by increased EBITDA from telecoms activities (+454 million euros).

Net income

The net income for the Orange Group was 3.263 billion euros in 2016, compared with 2.958 billion euros in 2015 (on an historical basis). The increase of 305 million euros between the two years is linked to the increase of 1.805 billion euros in net income from discontinued operations related to EE, partly offset by the decrease in operating income of 665 million euros, the net write-down of BT shares of 533 million euros, and the increase of 321 million euros in corporate income tax.

CAPEX

The Group's CAPEX (6.971 billion euros in 2016) rose 3.0% on a comparable basis. CAPEX in telecoms activities (6.956 billion euros) was up 2.8%, and CAPEX as a proportion of revenues from telecoms activities was 17.0% (+0.4 percentage points compared with 2015).
Investments in fibre increased 10% on a comparable basis. This was principally related to France, Spain and Poland. A total of 20.3 million households had fibre connectivity across the Group at 31 December 2016 (+57% year on year), of which 9.6 million were in Spain, 6.9 million in France, 2.0 million in Romania (following the cross-network-sharing agreement with Telekom Romania), 1.5 million in Poland and 350,000 in Slovakia.
Investments in very high-speed mobile services continued, following on from the previous year. The 4G coverage rate at 31 December 2016 was 88% of the population in France, 90% in Spain, 99% in Poland, 99.6% in Belgium, 80% in Romania and Slovakia, and 97% in Moldova. In France and Spain, investments also sought to improve service quality for recreational areas and in transportation. At the same time, 4G+ deployment continued in France and in the other European countries.
In Africa and the Middle East, 3G is deployed in the 21 countries of that segment, with 4G commercially available in 10 of them (Botswana, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea Bissau, Jordan, Liberia, Morocco, Mauritius, Senegal and Tunisia). Moreover, Orange Egypt announced on 14 October that it had acquired a 4G licence.
In the area of Internet of Things (IoT), a dedicated network based on LoRa technology is being deployed in France and already covers 18 urban areas (120 towns). 
Substantial CAPEX is devoted to information systems and service platforms, with the datacentre optimisation programme in France, investment related to the integration of Jazztel in Spain, and ongoing projects to improve the customer experience in Africa and the Middle East.
Capital spending on customer equipment also increased, with the launch of the New Livebox and its TV decoder in France last May.
Upgrades to the stores continue. At 31 December 2016, the Group had 157 stores based on the new Smart Store concept, 65 of which are in France, 79 in the other European countries, and 13 in Africa and the Middle East.

Changes in asset portfolio

In January 2016, Orange and Deutsche Telekom finalised the sale of 100% of EE, their joint venture in the United Kingdom, to BT Group. Upon closing of the sale, Orange received 4.5 billion euros in cash and a 4% interest in BT Group.
In Africa, the Group reinforced its presence with acquisitions in four countries in 2016: Cellcom in Liberia, Tigo in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and entities of the Bharti group in Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone. The Group also announced 5 April its acquisition of an interest in Africa Internet Group, the e-commerce leader in Africa. On 10 June 2016, Orange completed the sale of its entire 70% interest in Telkom Kenya to Helios Investment Partners.
In the Europe zone, on 18 October 2016, Orange completed the acquisition of 100% of the capital of Sun Communications, the leading supplier of paid television in Moldova which will enable Orange to propose broadband convergent offers on the Moldovan market.
In the area of enterprise services, the Group announced on 15 April 2016 that it had acquired 100% of Lexsi, a European leader in cybersecurity and a specialist in threat intelligence services. Orange also announced on 20 July 2016 the acquisition of Log'in Consultants which specialises in integration services for workstation virtualisation.
In October 2016, Orange acquired 65% of Groupama Banque[9] which was renamed Orange Bank on 16 January 2017. The Orange Bank online banking offer will be available in France in the 1st half of 2017.
Over the course of 2016, Orange Digital Ventures, the Group's investment firm, acquired interests in five promising start-ups, in line with the goals of the Essentiels2020 plan: SecBi, PayJoy, BandwidthX, KissKissBankBank and Jumia.

Net financial debt

The Orange Group had total net financial debt[10] of 24.444 billion euros at 31 December 2016, a reduction of 2.108 billion euros compared with 31 December 2015, due in particular to the sale of EE in January 2016, for which Orange received 4.481 billion euros net in cash and a 4% interest in BT Group.
The Group also pursued its policy of selective acquisitions for a net total (acquisitions minus other disposals) of 1.191 billion euros, in particular with the acquisition of operations in Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Liberia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Moldova. In addition to this is added the net effect of the acquisition of a majority interest in Groupama Banque (now Orange Bank). Additionally, a total of 1.800 billion euros was paid for telecommunication licences in 2016 and concerned in particular the 4G licenses in Poland and Egypt and the 700 MHz licences in France.
The ratio of net financial debt to adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities was 1.93x at 31 December 2016, versus 2.01x at 31 December 2015. It is in line with the target of a ratio of net debt to adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities of about 2x in the medium term.
Items related to the change in net financial debt and to the ratio of net debt to adjusted EBITDA from telecoms activities are presented in appendix 4.

Review by operating segment

France

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 18,969  19,154  19,141  (1.0)% (0.9)%
Adjusted EBITDA 7,134  7,097  7,075  0.5% 0.8%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 37.6% 37.1% 37.0% 0 0
Operating Income 3,709  3,765  (1.5)%
CAPEX 3,421  3,097  3,097  10.5% 10.5%
CAPEX / Revenues 18.0% 16.2% 16.2% 0 0

Revenues from France declined a modest 0.8% in the 4th quarter of 2016 after falling 0.6% in the 3rd quarter on a comparable basis.
Mobile services declined 4.6% in the 4th quarter after falling 3.8% in the 3rd quarter, marked by a decline of national roaming revenues, as well as the impact of roaming price reductions in Europe. SIM-only offers continued their rapid growth and represented close to two thirds (65%) of retail contracts at 31 December 2016 (+13 percentage points in one year).
Open convergent offers and Sosh offers continued to grow strongly, with 7.830 million retail Open customers at 31 December 2016 (+11.2% year on year) and 3.277 million Sosh customers (+11.5% year on year). There were 20.775 million contract customers[11] at 31 December 2016 (up 2.5% year on year), with 4G customers (11.3 million) making up 54% of that customer base.
Fixed services rose 1.4% in the 4th quarter of 2016, after climbing 0.7% in the 3rd quarter. The growth of fixed broadband services continued to be strong (+4.9% in the 4th quarter after rising 5.8% in the 3rd quarter), led by an increase in the customer base and a rise in ARPU. The fixed broadband customer base was 11.151 million subscribers at 31 December 2016 (+3.9% year on year). It included 1.452 million fibre subscribers, up 51% year on year. Fixed broadband ARPU recorded growth of 0.8% at 31 December 2016, reflecting the growing share of fibre and premium offers (Play and Jet offers) and the development of TV content offers. Convergent offers represented 57% of the retail fixed broadband customer base at 31 December 2016 (+3 percentage points in one year).
Fixed services to carriers also increased in the 4th quarter (+5.2%) with fibre deployment, increased ADSL revenues (accesses and collection of data traffic) and infrastructure services. The downward trend in traditional telephony was 12.2% in the 4th quarter.

Adjusted EBITDA for France increased 0.5% in 2016 on a comparable basis, and the adjusted EBITDA rate (37.6%) improved by 0.6 percentage points compared with 2015. The decline in revenues was offset by a reduction of commercial expenses (in particular due to a streamlining of the distribution network), and the reduction of labour expenses and overheads achieved in connection with the Explore2020 operational efficiency plan.

CAPEX in France climbed 10.5% in 2016, and was equivalent to 18.0% of revenues (+1.9 percentage points compared with 2015), led by a sharp increase in fibre investment meaning a total of 6.9 million connectable households at 31 December 2016 (+1.8 million households in one year). Substantial investment in very high-speed mobile continued: 88% of the population had 4G coverage at 31 December 2016 (+8 percentage points year on year), and 43% of 4G sites were equipped with 4G+ at that date.

Europe

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 10,541  10,288  9,963  2.4% 5.8%
Adjusted EBITDA 2,944  2,824  2,740  4.2% 7.5%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 27.9% 27.4% 27.5% 0 0
Operating Income 186  718  (74.2)%
CAPEX 1,960  1,995  1,783  (1.8)% 9.8%
CAPEX / Revenues 18.6% 19.4% 17.9% 0 0

Revenue growth from the Europe zone accelerated in the 4th quarter of 2016, rising 4.5% after the 2.8% increase of the 3rd quarter, on a comparable basis.
Across the Europe zone, revenues from mobile services followed the trend of previous quarters, increasing 3.1% in the 4th quarter of 2016 on a comparable basis. There continued to be strong momentum in commercial contract activity for the third consecutive quarter, with 726,000 net sales in the 4th quarter. The total contract customer base was 33.6 million customers at 31 December 2016, an increase of 6.9% year on year, representing close to two thirds (65.9%) of the total mobile customer base at that date (+3.5 percentage points year on year).
Fixed broadband revenues rose 7.7% in the 4th quarter after rising 4.8% in the 3rd quarter (on a comparable basis), reflecting the rapid development of fibre and TV content offers in Spain. The fixed broadband customer base was 6.2 million customers at 31 December 2016 (+3.0% year on year), including 1.8 million fibre customers, mainly in Spain. At 31 December 2016, fixed broadband also included customers of convergent offers recently marketed via cable in Belgium and via fibre in Romania.

Adjusted EBITDA for the Europe zone rose 4.2% in 2016 on a comparable basis and the adjusted EBITDA margin rate was 27.9% (+0.5 percentage point compared with 2015). The increase in revenues and decrease in labour expenses were partly offset by higher external purchases, in particular content costs, commercial expenses, and interconnection and connectivity costs.

CAPEX in the Europe zone was 1.960 billion euros in 2016, equivalent to 18.6% of revenues, slightly down compared with the previous year. The roll-out of mobile 4G and 4G+ services continued and investments in fibre remained high, principally in Spain and Poland.

Spain

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 5,014  4,731  4,253  6.0% 17.9%
Adjusted EBITDA 1,349  1,190  1,068  13.4% 26.4%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 26.9% 25.2% 25.1% 0 0
Operating Income 276  275  0.2%
CAPEX 1,086  1,100  864  (1.3)% 25.7%
CAPEX / Revenues 21.7% 23.3% 20.3% 0 0

Revenue growth remained very high in Spain in the 4th quarter of 2016, rising 7.9% after the 7.8% increase of the 3rd quarter (on a comparable basis).
The growth was principally due to the development of mobile services, which increased 7.5% in the 4th quarter of 2016, and particularly the enrichment of mobile offers including the deployment of 4G. There were 7.9 million 4G customers at 31 December 2016 (up 1.5x year on year) and the contract customer base[12] also continued to grow (11.431 million customers at 31 December 2016, up 3.6% year on year). Mobile services supplied to other carriers also increased sharply, led by the MVNOs and network sharing. 
Fixed services rose 5.4% in the 4th quarter of 2016, continuing the trend seen in the previous three quarters. Fixed broadband revenue growth accelerated, rising 10.7% in the 4th quarter after a 7.8% increase in the 3rd quarter. Fixed broadband had 3.940 million customers at 31 December 2016 (+5.0% year on year), and ARPU rose 7.5% following the rapid development of fibre and TV services. Fibre had 1.610 million customers at 31 December 2016 (up 2.0x in one year) and represented 41% of the fixed broadband customer base at that date (+19 percentage points in one year). TV services increased sharply, with 507,000 customers at 31 December 2016 (up 1.7x year on year) and convergent offers represented 84.5% of the retail fixed broadband customer base at 31 December 2016 (+1.8 percentage points year on year).

Adjusted EBITDA for Spain rose 13.4% in 2016 on a comparable basis and the adjusted EBITDA margin rate (26.9%) improved 1.8 percentage points compared with 2015. Both benefitted from strong revenue growth and substantial synergies related to the consolidation of Jazztel, partially offset by increased commercial expenses and content purchases.

CAPEX in Spain was 1.086 billion euros and was equivalent to 21.7% of revenues. The deployment of very high-speed services continued: at 31 December 2016, there were 9.6 million connectable households (+2.8 million year on year) and 90% of the population had 4G mobile coverage (+6 percentage points year on year).

Poland

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 2,644  2,710  2,831  (2.4)% (6.6)%
Adjusted EBITDA 725  807  842  (10.2)% (13.9)%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 27.4% 29.8% 29.7% 0 0
Operating Income (405) 136 
CAPEX 455  444  463  2.4% (1.9)%
CAPEX / Revenues 17.2% 16.4% 16.4% 0 0

Revenues from Poland rose 1.9% in the 4th quarter of 2016 after falling 3.9% in the 3rd quarter on a comparable basis. The 4th quarter benefitted from a very strong increase in mobile equipment sales (linked to faster development of sales on the instalment payment plan) and from a recovery of ICT[13].
Mobile services declined 3.4% in the 4th quarter after falling 3.1% in the 3rd quarter. Commercial momentum remained strong in the 4th quarter with 368,000 net contract sales, after 309,000 in the 3rd quarter. The contract customer base rose 13% year on year (+1.1 million net additions) and there were 4.3 million 4G users at 31 December 2016 (up 2.1x year on year). The prepaid contract customer base posted a net loss of 1.0 million customers over the year partly related to migrations to contracts, and partly due to the recording of customer identities, which has become mandatory and began last July, though this had a limited impact on the revenue trend.  
Fixed services declined 7.4% in the 4th quarter after falling 8.6% in the 3rd quarter. Most of the decrease was related to traditional fixed services (fixed telephony and carrier services). Fixed broadband also declined (-6.8% in the 4th quarter) due to a decrease in ADSL customers and to ARPU erosion. Nonetheless, the customer base trend improved in the 4th quarter with a significant increase in net sales of very high-speed VDSL offers and fibre (+56,000 compared with +44,000 in the 3rd quarter). At 31 December 2016, very high-speed offers had a total of 492,000 customers (including 88,000 fibre subscribers), an increase of 65% year on year, and there were 566,000 convergent offer customers on the retail market, up 23% year on year.  

Adjusted EBITDA for Poland declined 10.2% in 2016 on a comparable basis with the adjusted EBITDA rate (27.4%) down 2.4 percentage points. The decreased revenues and increased interconnection costs and commercial expenses were partially offset by a reduction of labour expenses and of subcontracted operations and technical maintenance.

CAPEX in Poland rose 2.4% in 2016 on a comparable basis and was the equivalent of 17.2% of revenues (+0.8 percentage points in relation to 2015). The increased CAPEX was linked to the deployment of very high-speed fixed and mobile services. At 31 December 2016, a total of 1.5 million connectable households (2.1x in one year) and 99% of the population had 4G coverage (+15 percentage points year on year).

Belgium & Luxembourg

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 1,242  1,235  1,235  0.5% 0.5%
Adjusted EBITDA 316  276  276  14.4% 14.4%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 25.4% 22.3% 22.3% 0 0
Operating Income 113  119  (4.7)%
CAPEX 168  193  193  (13.2)% (13.2)%
CAPEX / Revenues 13.5% 15.6% 15.6% 0 0

Revenues were stable in Belgium and Luxembourg in the 4th quarter (-0.2%). Increases from mobile and fixed services were offset by decreased mobile equipment sales.
Mobile services grew 2.0% in the 4th quarter, despite the impact of international roaming price cuts in Europe. The mobile contract customer base[14] (2.345 million customers at 31 December 2016) grew 1.9% year on year, and quarterly ARPU from contracts in Belgium rose 1.8%. The MVNO customer base had 2.043 million customers at 31 December 2016 (+14.3% year on year).
Fixed services rose 3.1% in the 4th quarter, led by the recent marketing of convergent offers in Belgium. At 31 December 2016, Orange Belgium had 33,400 Internet and IPTV convergent offer customers, with 56,700 associated mobile contracts.

Adjusted EBITDA in Belgium and Luxembourg increased 14.4% in 2016. Excluding the impact of the pylon tax agreement with Wallonia, adjusted EBITDA was 300 million euros in 2016, an improvement of 1.1% compared with 2015. The decrease in interconnection costs and network and IT expenses and a reduction of commissions, labour expenses and bad debts offset the increased costs of advertising and promotion, and connectivity costs (cable network accesses) linked to the launch of convergent offers.

CAPEX in Belgium and Luxembourg was 168 million euros in 2016. Investments in fixed broadband services (IT and customer equipment) increased in connection with the deployment of convergent offers on cable. High investment in 4G+ continued, and at 31 December 2016, 99.6% of the population had 4G coverage and 54% had 4G+ coverage.

Central European countries

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 1,648  1,616  1,648  1.9% (0.0)%
Adjusted EBITDA 554  551  554  0.6% 0.1%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 33.6% 34.1% 33.6% 0 0
Operating Income 202  188  7.2%
CAPEX 251  258  263  (2.7)% (4.6)%
CAPEX / Revenues 15.2% 15.9% 16.0% 0 0

Revenues in the Central European countries rose 2.6% in the 4th quarter of 2016, after rising 0.8% in the 3rd quarter (on a comparable basis). The trend in the 4th quarter improved across all three countries:

  • in Romania, revenues rose 3.8% in the 4th quarter after rising 3.3% in the 3rd quarter, led by mobile services and mobile equipment sales. TV services had 333,000 customers at 31 December 2016, a 20.9% increase in one year. Marketing of very high-speed fixed services commenced on 5th September;
  • in Slovakia, the decline was limited to 0.9% in the 4th quarter following the 2.7% decrease of the 3rd quarter. Mobile services declined less while mobile equipment sales increased sharply. Fixed broadband had 162,000 customers at 31 December 2016 (+6.2% year on year), including 72,000 fibre customers;
  • in Moldova, revenues rose 6.3% in the 4th quarter after falling 3.7% in the 3rd quarter (on a comparable basis). The improvement was linked to a recovery in mobile equipment sales, while incoming international traffic continued to be down. Following consolidation of Sun Communications on 1 October 2016, Orange Moldova's TV services had 100,000 customers at 31 December 2016, while fixed broadband had 44,000 customers.

The mobile customer base of the Central European countries was 15.1 million at 31 December 2016. Contracts (8.2 million customers) increased 4.2% and represented 54.1% of the mobile customer base (+2.4 percentage points in one year). The 4G mobile customer base doubled in one year to 3.2 million at 31 December 2016 (41% of the contracts, excluding machine-to-machine). The fixed broadband customer base had 212,000 customers at that same date, including 123,000 very high-speed customers.

Adjusted EBITDA for the Central European countries rose 0.6% in 2016 on a comparable basis. The revenue growth was partly offset by increased interconnection costs and commercial expenses (purchases of mobile handsets).

CAPEX in the Central European countries was 251 million euros in 2016, the majority of which was related to mobile services, in particular the continued deployment of 4G+ in Romania and of 4G in all three countries. In Romania, the agreement signed at the end of 2015 with Telekom Romania for the use of its fibre network in urban areas gave access to 2.0 million connectable households, enabling the marketing of convergent offers.

Africa & Middle East

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 5,245  5,110  4,899  2.6% 7.1%
Adjusted EBITDA 1,658  1,674  1,667  (1.0)% (0.5)%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 31.6% 32.8% 34.0% 0 0
Operating Income 68  463  (85.3)%
CAPEX 962  1,005  922  (4.2)% 4.3%
CAPEX / Revenues 18.3% 19.7% 18.8% 0 0

Revenues in the Africa & Middle East segment grew 1.6% in the 4th quarter of 2016, after rising 2.5% in the 3rd quarter, on a comparable basis. The slowing of growth in the 4th quarter was linked to a decrease in services to operators and less favourable conditions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In parallel, the growth of mobile data services remained strong, reaching 31% in the 4th quarter, while revenues from Orange Money were up 58%. Orange Money had 28.9 million customers at 31 December 2016, including 8.4 million active customers.
The principal contributors to revenue growth in the 4th quarter were Mali, Burkina Faso, Guinea and Côte d'Ivoire.
The mobile customer base in the Africa and Middle East segment totalled 120.7 million customers at 31 December 2016, compared with 113.5 million at 30 September. The increase of 7.2 million customers in the 4th quarter was linked to the consolidation of Burkina Faso (5.9 million customers) and of Sierra Leone (1.5 million). On a comparable basis, the mobile customer base of the Africa and Middle East segment was down 0.3% year on year. It was impacted throughout 2016 by an unprecedented level of disconnections linked to the strengthened requirements regarding the verification of customer identities in most countries.

Adjusted EBITDA for the Africa and Middle East segment was down 1.0% in 2016 on a comparable basis, and the adjusted EBITDA margin (31.6%) was down 1.2 percentage points.
Excluding the impact of the devaluation of the Egyptian pound on operating expenses (-32 million euros), the adjusted EBITDA margin for the 2nd half remained stable at 31.6%, despite the slowing of revenue growth and rising taxes in some countries.

CAPEX in the Africa and Middle East segment remained sustained (962 million euros in 2016), particularly related to entities brought into the scope of consolidation during 2016, and due to the development of mobile data networks. However, CAPEX declined 4.2% on a comparable basis following the substantial investments of previous years, particularly in Morocco and Jordan.

Enterprise

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 6,398  6,351  6,405  0.7% (0.1)%
Adjusted EBITDA 1,014  939  932  8.0% 8.8%
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues 15.9% 14.8% 14.6% 0 0
Operating Income 594  534  11.2%
CAPEX 336  320  325  5.1% 3.5%
CAPEX / Revenues 5.3% 5.0% 5.1% 0 0

Revenues from the Enterprise segment were stable (-0.1%) in the 4th quarter of 2016 on a comparable basis, after the 1.0% increase over the first nine months of the year. Growth in IT and integration services offset a decline in voice services and data services. Full year 2016 revenues rose 0.7% after falling 0.9% in 2015.
IT and integration services rose 3.9% in the 4th quarter, following on from an increase of 4.5% in the first nine months of the year. Security services climbed 26% over the quarter, and Cloud revenues rose 20%.
Voice services declined 0.6% in the 4th quarter. The decline of traditional telephony was partially offset by an increase in voice-over-IP and customer relations services (contact number services).
Data services fell 2.8% in the 4th quarter, in part due to a decline of television broadcasting (-11.3%). Revenues from IPVPN subscribers fell 1.5% over the quarter but increased 1.3% for the full year. There were 352,000 IPVPN subscribers at 31 December 2016, up 0.9% year on year.

Adjusted EBITDA for the Enterprise segment rose 8.0% in 2016 on a comparable basis, and the adjusted EBITDA margin (15.9%) improved 1.1 percentage points compared with the previous year. In addition to the revenue growth, external purchases were reduced in connection with the decline of activity on the legacy networks in France and actions taken to improve profitability internationally.

CAPEX in the Enterprise segment increased 5.1% on a comparable basis, related to IT services: new product development, investment in network virtualisation and migration of added-value services over IP.

International Carriers & Shared Services

   
In millions of euros period ended 31 December
  2016 2015 2015 16/15 16/15
    comparable basis historical basis comparable basis historical basis
           
Revenues 1,812  1,853  1,915  (2.2)% (5.4)%
Adjusted EBITDA (56) (4)    
Adjusted EBITDA / Revenues (3.1)% (0.2)% 0.2% 0 0
Operating Income (565) (738) 23.6%
CAPEX 277  352  359  (21.3)% (22.7)%
CAPEX / Revenues 15.3% 19.0% 18.7% 0 0

Revenues from the International Carriers and Shared Services segment fell 2.2% on a comparable basis in 2016, to 1.812 billion euros. The decline in voice services to international operators was partially offset by the growth of Orange Marine (submarine cable-laying and maintenance).

Adjusted EBITDA for 2016 was down 52 million euros compared with the previous year on a comparable basis, reflecting increased CAPEX on the development of the Orange brand (change of brand in Belgium, Egypt and Morocco; sponsorship of EURO 2016), partially offset by increased revenues from property asset disposals connected with the property portfolio optimisation plan.

CAPEX amounted to 277 million euros in 2016, a decrease of 75 million euros on a comparable basis, following the sharp increase in 2015 (+127 million euros) generated by investments in submarine cables and projects to refurbish and upgrade the property portfolio, in particular the creation of the Orange Gardens eco-campus for Innovation.

Orange Bank

Adjusted EBITDA for Orange Bank, consolidated from 4 October 2016 (three months of activity), represented a loss of 12 million euros in 2016, a net banking income (NBI) of 21 million euros and a bank loan cost of risk of 2 million euros.

Operating income from Orange Bank was positive at 85 million euros, including a 97 million-euro profit related to Orange's acquisition of a majority interest in Groupama Banque (now called Orange Bank).

Orange Bank CAPEX (15 million euros in 2016) related to preparation for the commercial launch of the business, scheduled for the 1st half of 2017.



[1] Excluding machine-to-machine.

[2] The Group's annual financial statements for 2016 include the activity of Orange Bank from the last three months of the year. Orange Bank's net banking income is recognised in the Group's other operating income. Adjusted EBITDA, operating income and CAPEX are shown separately for the telecoms activities and Orange Bank in the tables on pages 4 and 5.

[3] Net financial debt as defined and used by Orange does not include the activities of Orange Bank, to which this concept does not apply.

[4] Subject to the approval of the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders.

[5] The ex-dividend date is 12 June 2017 and the record date 13 June 2017.

[6] On an historical basis, 2016 revenues rose 1.7% in relation to 2015, including:
   - the impact of changes in scope of consolidation (+2.2 percentage points), in particular with the acquisition of Jazztel and the full consolidation of Médi Telecom on 1 July 2015; the acquisition of Cellcom in Liberia and of Tigo in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (9 months and 6 months of activity in 2016 respectively); the acquisition of entities of the Bharti group in Burkina Faso (with 6 months of activity in 2016) and in Sierra Leone (with 5 months of activity in 2016); the sale of 80% of Dailymotion on 30 June 2015 (+10% on 30 July); and the sale of Orange Armenia on 3 September 2015;
   - the impact of foreign exchange (-1.1 percentage points), in particular the decline of the Egyptian pound and of the Polish zloty.

[7] Excluding machine-to-machine.

[8] Primarily due to changes in the scope of consolidation (acquisition of Jazztel on 1 July 2015 and full consolidation of Médi Telecom also as from 1 July 2015), the increased CAPEX of recent years (linked in particular with the deployment of 4G and fibre networks), and the amortization of new telecommunication licences (mainly 4G).

[9] Groupama retained 35%.

[10] Net financial debt as defined and used by Orange does not include the activities of Orange Bank, to which this concept does not apply.

[11] Excluding machine-to-machine.

[12] Excluding machine-to-machine.

[13] Information & Communication Technologies.

[14] Excluding machine-to-machine.