Orange España: Calling on partners to improve customer experiences

About Orange España

With 264 million customers and more than 150,000 employees worldwide, Orange is one of the largest operators of mobile and internet services in Europe and Africa and a global leader in corporate telecommunication services.

Industries: Telecommunications
Location: Spain

Orange España adopts the Apigee API management platform to streamline API deployment and provide proprietary and third-party telecommunications services to businesses and consumers.

Google Cloud Results

  • Reduces API publication process from days to minutes
  • Complies with TM Forum telco API standards using Apigee
  • Streamlines production through continuous integration pipeline

Serving 30M requests daily through the Apigee platform

Orange España is a Spanish telco company that is part of the Orange group of telco companies operating across the European Union and Africa. Similar to other telco companies, Orange is undergoing a digital transformation. In Spain, this process is in large part focused on implementing APIs to enable external and third-party services for end users.

"With APIs, we activate, deactivate, and create new customer services. We enroll new customers, report technical issues, and record each customer interaction through our APIs. At this point, APIs cover most of our business."

Alfredo Garcia Lavilla, Solution Architect, Orange España

Though Orange España had been working with APIs for several years, the company was missing an enabling mechanism for connecting its APIs to developers and end customers. The company wanted to find an API management solution that offered wide-ranging functionality beyond the standard gateway it had been using. After evaluating several alternatives, Orange España chose the Apigee API management platform from Google, based in part on the three years of success that its France-based parent company, Orange S.A., had already experienced with Apigee.

Orange España provides fixed and mobile connectivity services to businesses and consumers. Consequently, the company creates customer-centric APIs focused on sharing information internally and with partners about customer accounts and the services they use. "With APIs, we activate, deactivate, and create new customer services," says Alfredo Garcia Lavilla, Solution Architect at Orange España. "We enroll new customers, report technical issues, and record each customer interaction through our APIs. At this point, APIs cover most of our business."

"It's important that our partners engage with our APIs the right way. The developer portal has changed the way they interact and has allowed us to create a fully documented market for our APIs, which is something we previously didn't have."

Alfredo Garcia Lavilla, Solution Architect, Orange España

Orange España considers the Apigee developer portal to be a key element in its ecosystem. The company's IT team uses the portal as a point of entry for partners to access services and APIs. Project managers at Orange España update the portal's API documentation to make it easy and fast for partners to consume and interact with the available APIs. This focus on partner enablement has resulted in significant cost reductions for Orange España.

"It's important that our partners engage with our APIs the right way. The developer portal has changed the way they interact and has allowed us to create a fully documented market for our APIs, which is something we previously didn't have," explains Garcia.

Orange España partners predominantly with other companies rather than third-party developers by deploying a true open-API model. Partners provides services to Orange — and vice versa. This enables Orange España to maintain its position as a top provider of mobile and fixed telco services.

Currently 50 different partners consume about 100 APIs through the developer portal. As a telco, Orange España says it has reached 90 percent compliance with TM Forum standards that provide a common API language for telco providers.

"Having monetization features in Apigee will allow us to extract revenue from the foundation that we've established with our developer ecosystem. Connecting those dots will be the most important thing we do over the next few years."

Alfredo Garcia Lavilla, Solution Architect, Orange España

Security and speed were key reasons Orange España chose Apigee. Orange España defined the goal of having prototype APIs deployed in less than 45 minutes from definition to publication. The team accomplishes this in part by automatically deploying APIs to its on-premises Apigee gateway implementation.

The continuous integration pipeline is facilitated by a Maven plugin for Apigee, enabling Orange España to deploy new services quickly. Customers consume everything from traditional telco products to home security services to customer care through the company's APIs. Says Garcia, "I love APIs because they connect our customers with the things we do."

Orange España aims to transition all API traffic from its previous platform to Apigee in 2019. Once this transition is complete, Garcia says he wants to use his organization to evangelize APIs as products throughout the company. He envisions these APIs as standalone products rather than just serving as enablers for other products. By implementing Apigee's monetization capabilities, he adds, APIs can take up an even more prominent position as a key strategic asset at Orange España.

"Having monetization features in Apigee will allow us to extract revenue from the foundation that we've established with our developer ecosystem," says Garcia. "Connecting those dots will be the most important thing we do over the next few years."

About Orange España

With 264 million customers and more than 150,000 employees worldwide, Orange is one of the largest operators of mobile and internet services in Europe and Africa and a global leader in corporate telecommunication services.

Industries: Telecommunications
Location: Spain
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