Orange announced on Thursday it has partnered with Google through Orange Digital Ventures (ODV), the Group’s corporate venture fund, to join forces in financing the best start-ups. According to Orange, through this partnership, Google will leverage ODV’s sourcing of start-ups to explore opportunities for co-investments in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Orange reported that the ODV team and Google will jointly evaluate promising investment opportunities with start-ups in the fields of new connectivities, IoT, cybersecurity, cloud, AI, fintech, as well as new business models in the Middle East and Africa. The company also revealed that this cooperation around financing will be extended by regular coordination meetings between the management teams of the two groups in order to examine investment opportunities around these start-ups and to accelerate the dynamics of open innovation at Orange.
Speaking about the partnership, Stéphane Richard, Chairman and CEO of Orange, stated:
“We are very proud to announce this partnership which will enable start-ups supported by Orange Digital Ventures to explore potential co-investment opportunities with Google. Through this partnership, we stand to reinforce Orange Digital Ventures’ “Smart Money” value-proposition by offering entrepreneurs with whom we work much more than just financing.”
Carlo d’Asaro Biondo, EMEA President of Google Partnerships, went on to add:
“We are delighted to support Orange’s ecosystem of start-ups and innovation and to explore alongside them opportunities for co-investment in Europe, Africa and the Middle East (EMEA). Orange’s ecosystem is consistent with Google’s know-how and our ability to accelerate the growth of start-ups. This partnership is a way to enhance our collective contribution to innovation in this region.”