Rififi at the head of Altice, the CEO thanked and replaced by a close friend of Drahi

Mathieu Grumiaux

August 25, 2022 at 6:15 p.m.


Patrick Drahi

© Reuters

The owner of Altice has decided to overhaul the management of SFR, sanctioned for its poor results for several months.

Patrick Drahi is not satisfied with the performance of his group and does not hesitate to cut heads to change things.

Altice France loses its boss after 13 years of seniority

It is by a memo sent to the teams of Altice France that the departure from a common agreement by its CEO, Grégory Rabuel, was announced after 19 years with the group. Entered in 2004 at Numericable, the businessman rose through the ranks at the operator, then spent 13 years in the Altice group to finally become CEO of the French subsidiary as well as the operator SFR.

Patrick Drahi” warmly and warmly thanks Grégory for the colossal work carried out in recent years “, without explaining the reasons for the immediate departure of one of his followers. It is Arthur Dreyfus, director of Altice Media, a subsidiary that brings together BFMTV and RMC radio, who will take over the management of Altice France, without giving up his previous functions. Mathieu Coq, hitherto Executive Director Overseas of SFR, becomes CEO of the operator.

At the same time, we learn that Fabien Costa, executive director of consumer activities at SFR, has been asked to pack his boxes. He is replaced by Éric Pradeau.

SFR skates and weakens the Drahi empire

To explain this sudden change of CEO at the head of the operator (the sixth since the takeover of SFR by Patrick Drahi), several union sources indicate that the group’s performance has been more than disappointing, and has been for several years already.

If SFR shows an increase in its mobile subscribers of 5 million customers in a year and a half, which brings the total number to 20.9 million, this good health can only be explained by the acquisition of virtual operators Prixtel, Afone, Coriolis and Syma. This growth therefore cost SFR dearly, with an amount of 415 million euros for the takeover of Coriolis alone.

Performance on the fixed line is even worse, with a loss of 36,000 customers in a year and a half, if we remove from the equation the subscribers recovered again during the takeover of Coriolis. At the same time, Free, Orange and Bouygues Telecom recruited 300,000 new customers.

Patrick Drahi could no longer let the situation get bogged down, especially since he contracted very large debts to finance his acquisitions. SFR alone represents 23 billion euros in debt and must quickly cough up cash to allow the businessman to repay his creditors.

At the same time, and for several months, SFR has implemented a voluntary departure plan and hopes to see nearly 2,000 employees leave.

Source : Capital

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