Orange has established a compliance centre in Africa to back the development of its money services across the continent.

The Orange Money Compliance Expertise Centre (CECOM) will be located in Abijan and will deploy a mutualised policy for managing risk and conformity issues for the markets it operates in.

The France-based operator said the centre will work with its subsidiaries across Africa and will be staffed with banking, telecoms and IT workers.

The establishment of the centre builds upon Electronic Money Establishment licences the operator was granted earlier this year for its services in Senegal, Mali, Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea.

The licences were required following regulatory changes made last year in the wake of greater demand for mobile money services in West Africa.

Orange said they would enable it to launch services much more quickly.

Previously partner banks had to handle the compliance of Orange's money services.

Marc Rennard, Deputy Chief Executive Officer in charge of Customer Experience and Mobile Financial Services, said: “With this new milestone, mobile financial services become an integral part of Orange’s DNA.

"The licenses received from the Central Banks together with our investment in the CECOM are testimony to our commitment to this diversification, which will benefit our customers who use Orange Money services several million times each day.”

Bruno Mettling, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Orange Group and CEO of Orange Middle East and Africa, added: “By securing EME status, we are able to further develop the Orange Money business, which lies at the heart of our mission of being the strategic partner for the digital transformation in Africa and the Middle East, with the objective of generating more than €200 million by 2018.

"Today, the Orange Money customer base represents five percent of all customers in this market worldwide.

"Acceleration is already in progress, in particular with the opening of new corridors to expand our international money transfer services.”

Africa is an increasingly vital market for Orange. In July, it launched a new Google phone, smart meters and solar energy for its different opcos.

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