Hans Snook sheds light on his future

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The Independent Online

Hans Snook, the chief executive of the cellphone operator Orange, said yesterday he may step back from the forefront of the company he created to develop his interests in alternative medicine and new products.

Hans Snook, the chief executive of the cellphone operator Orange, said yesterday he may step back from the forefront of the company he created to develop his interests in alternative medicine and new products.

France Telecom, which acquired Orange from Vodafone for £31bn in May, moved yesterday to dispel rumours that Mr Snook may leave the group after he told reporters at a London conference that he wanted "more time to pursue these interests".

Yesterday a spokeswoman for Orange, which is due to be listed in the first quarter of next year, said: "Hans has confirmed last weekend and many times subsequently that he has no intention of leaving the group. We will be making an announcement about management structure in due course."

It has been mooted that he might become chairman of the group. But analysts said Mr Snook, well known for his interest in feng shui and alternative therapies such as colonic irrigation, may be tempted to look for pastures new.

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