Orange to expand in the United States?

ACCORDING to reports in the French press, France Telecom may be about to expand the Orange mobile phone brand into the United States of America. There is speculation that this will involve some form of deal with the Cingular company and would use European GSM technology rather US equivalents, creating a global mobile phone service without the need for phones which use different frequencies.

If this turns out to be the case it will be interesting to see whether the company will try to use motor racing as a means of promotion as it has in Europe. It is worth noting that the current Orange sponsorship deal was agreed by former chief executive Hans Snuck rather than by the managers of France Telecom, which bought Orange in June 2000. The Arrows sponsorship deal is up for renewal at the moment and it is by no means certain that the company will continue with Tom Walkinshaw's team. It is not even certain that Orange will stay in racing.

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