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Cingular, Orange Pact 'Eases Pain'

All politics may be local, but all business surely is not.

With an eye toward keeping corporate customers with international operations happy, Cingular Wireless today announced that Orange SA has joined its WorldView partner program.

The pact allows customers with operations in the United States, Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, Belgium or Switzerland to manage their Cingular and Orange wireless accounts through a secure online portal.

Other benefits include a single point of contact for trans-Atlantic purchase requests and major bids, as well as the ability for Orange minutes to count toward Cingular volume pricing discounts.

Orange, which is part of France Telecom, is the latest carrier to join the WorldView program, John Kampfe, a Cingular spokesman, told internetnews.com. Others include O2, Rogers, Wind, Sunrise and One.

"Cingular is receptive to working with any carriers that will enhance the benefits and reach of the WorldView program for our customers," Kampfe said.

Atlanta-based Cingular has many corporate customers with international operations. It provides service to 95 of the Fortune 100 companies and more than 80 percent of the Fortune 500.

The motivation for Orange, which has 56 million subscribers in 17 countries across Europe and elsewhere, was similar.

"Multinational companies tell us that procurement and leveraging economies of scale are two of their biggest headaches," Philippe Bernard, executive vice president of Orange business solutions, said in a statement. "Our reciprocal arrangement with Cingular ... eases that pain."