Press Release : Orange acquires a new ship

Orange acquires a new ship

Orange acquires a new ship through its subsidiary Elettra tlc for marine surveys of new submarine cable routes

Orange announces today the acquisition of a new ship through its fully owned Italian subsidiary Elettra  tlc, that will be equipped to carry out various marine activities linked to submarine cables projects, particularly marine route surveys. This ship will complement the existing  fleet of six cable ships of Orange Marine and Elettra.

Submarine cables are the backbone  of the internet and are currently undergoing a major development all around the world, fueled by new investments from new actors on top of traditional international operators. Orange is a major investor in over 40 submarine cables to date and continues to invest in a great number of projects to offer enriched, high-quality connectivity throughout the world.

Surveys of marine routes are a key step to choose the right cable routes and ensure the viability of the systems through their lifespan. Such operations are carried out by companies specialized in marine activities like Elettra, and require ships with the proper equipment and skilled staffs.

The ship built in 2007 as a multi-purpose support vessel will be equipped with state-of-the art equipment for marine surveys: multi-beams echo sounder, side scan sonar,ultra shorebase line…

This ship will strengthen the position of Orange Marine and Elettra on the market of marine activities related to submarine cables, in addition to the traditional missions of cable lay down and maintenance performed by the existing cable ships fleet. The ship is  currently heading to Italy where she will be undergoing a major refit and conversion, and renaming in order to be fully operational by the beginning of next year. She will be capable to work all around the world. Jean-Luc Vuillemin, Executive Vice President of Orange International Network Infrastructure and Services says: “This acquisition is a perfect illustration of the ambitions of Orange in the sector of  submarine cables. We have been involved in those activities for decades and we are proud to remain  one of the few operators in the world, with a leadership position in this area that still manages its own  fleet for marine works linked to submarine cables.”

Didier Dillard, CEO of Orange Marine and Elettra says : “I am very happy to welcome this new ship in Orange Marine and Elettra fleet. She will be a perfect complement to our existing installation and maintenance cable ships and will enable us to provide better services to our customers requiring not only installation services but turnkey solutions that include also desk top studies and marine surveys.”

The Submarine Cable Division of the Postal and Telecommunications Ministry, active since the middle of the 19th century, became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Orange Group in 1999. In October 2010, Orange acquired a controlling interest in Elettra, a subsidiary of Telecom Italia. Its management was delegated to Orange Marine.  Orange Marine and Elettra are specialized in  marine activities related to  submarine cables, from the  design and engineering phase up to the installation of regional or intercontinental links and the maintenance of existing cables. Orange Marine and Elettra represent 15% of the installation and maintenance of the submarine cables market, their cable ships have laid more than 220,000 km of optical fiber cables and have  carried out nearly 550 repairs, some of which at a depth of  more than 5,500 meters.