Telecom Executive Moves – First Half of July

telco moves July 2020

Welcome to another installment of Telco Moves!

Your biweekly guide to the notable hires, promotions and leadership changes in the global Telecom and ICT community.

Here are some of the major executive moves announcements from the first half of July 2020.



Orange appoints new CEOs in Poland and Belgium

  • Upon recommendation of the Supervisory Board of Orange Polska, Julien Ducarroz will replace Jean-François Fallacher as CEO of Orange Polska, who is moving to become the CEO of Orange Spain.

Julien Ducarroz, who is currently the CEO of Orange Moldova, has received the positive recommendation and support of both the Remuneration Committee and Orange Polska’s Supervisory Board at its meeting held on 6th July 2020.

  • The Board of Directors of Orange Belgium has decided to appoint Xavier Pichon to the position of CEO of Orange Belgium. He will succeed Michaël Trabbia, who will join the Orange Executive Committee as Chief Technology and Innovation Officer for the Group, overseeing the Technology & Global Innovation division.

Xavier Pichon re-joins Orange from the Boston Consulting Group; prior to this, he was Deputy CEO at Orange France, leading its Finance, Strategy, Transformation and Development.

  • Mari-Noëlle Jégo-Laveissière will take over responsibility for the Europe region from Ramon Fernandez, Deputy CEO, Finance, Performance and Europe Director. From 1st September 2020, she will be leading the Europe perimeter of Orange, which will comprise seven countries covering Belgium, Luxembourg, Moldova, Poland, Slovakia, Romania and Spain.

These changes will all take effect from 1st September 2020.



Colt Technology Services names new Chief Commercial Officer

Colt  has announced the appointment of Paula Cogan as its new Chief Commercial Officer (CCO).

Cogan replaces Keri Gilder who formerly held the role before becoming Chief Executive Officer (CEO) earlier this year.

Joining Colt four years ago, Cogan has played an influential role in Colt’s success as its Vice President for Enterprise and Capital Market Sales. Prior to joining Colt, Cogan held several senior sales roles at Verizon Business and BT.



IBM appoints Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh as First African Regional Head

IBM Corporation has appointed Angela Kyerematen-Jimoh Regional Head for North, East and West Africa where she will be responsible for IBM operations in over 40 countries in Africa including Morocco, Nigeria, Kenya, Senegal, Uganda, Ghana and Tunisia. Before her appointment, Ms. Kyerematen-Jimoh was Chief of Staff to the Senior Vice President in charge of Global Markets and Sales in IBM’s corporate headquarters in New York.

Ms. Kyerematen-Jimoh, who was previously Country Manager for Ghana joined IBM in 2011 as Marketing Manager for the West Africa Market Segment and rose through the ranks to become the Strategy Leader for Central East and West Africa. Prior to joining IBM, Ms. Kyerematen-Jimoh worked in banking for UBS Investment Bank & ABN AMRO in London and GT Bank Ghana.



NTT Ltd. appoints new Chief Finance Officer and UK Telco Head

NTT Ltd announced the appointment of Aki Hattori as new Chief Finance Officer, as Dave Sherriffs retires from the position, after 23 years with the NTT family.

Aki previously held the position of the Head of Corporate Finance and Governance at NTT Inc, as well as Vice President for the Global Business Office for NTT Holdings. In addition, he sits on the legal boards of several of the Group’s operating companies, as well as on the Audit and Risk Commitee of NTT Ltd.

Meanwhile at NTT DATA UK, Roei Haberman has been appointed as the new SVP of sales transformation and head of telco, media and technology (TMT).

Haberman has previously worked as the regional VP for Amdocs, where he headed a host of transformational programmes for global clients and was responsible for working on the management of start-ups, as part of the Amdocs Ventures fund.



Carl Grivner appointed Chief Executive Officer of GCX

Global Cloud Xchange (GCX) announced that the company’s Board of Directors has appointed Carl Grivner as Chief Executive Officer, effective 10 July 2020.

Mr. Grivner brings over 25 years of international executive and leadership experience, including 12 years operating at the level of Chief Executive Officer at major telecommunications companies in North and Central America, Europe, and Asia. Mr. Grivner will be based in London.

Mr. Grivner also serves on its Board of Directors. He previously was the CEO of Colt Technology Services. Before joining Colt, he served three years in Singapore as CEO of Pacnet, directing the global strategy of one of Asia’s leading end-to-end communications service providers. Previously, Mr. Grivner held leadership positions for numerous companies, including Cable & Wireless plc, Ameritech, and IBM.



Kjell Morten Johnsen to replace Anders Nilsson as President and CEO of Tele2

After six successful years as CEO of Com Hem and Tele2 AB (“Tele2”), Anders Nilsson has decided to step down from his position to focus on other things in life. Kjell Morten Johnsen, previously COO of VEON and Head of Telenor Europe, will replace Anders Nilsson as President and CEO of Tele2 as of September 15, 2020.

Kjell Morten Johnsen will start his position on September 15, 2020. He has over 20 years of experience in the telecom sector including many leadership roles such as COO of VEON and Head of Telenor Europe.



VMware Confirms Flinders Is Out As Channel Chief; Former Cisco Exec Sandy Hogan Takes Over

VMware’s global channel chief, Jenni Flinders, unexpectedly and quietly left the virtualization superstar last month after two years leading the company’s restructured channel charge, VMware confirmed to CRN.

Flinders was hired as vice president and global channel chief for VMware in April 2018, after spending 15 years in various channel partner and sales executive roles at Microsoft from 2000 to 2015. She hit the ground running at VMware, almost immediately introducing VMware Master Services Competencies and letting the VMware partner community know of her plans to completely overhaul VMware’s “entire partner program.”

Flinders is being replaced by former longtime Cisco veteran Sandy Hogan as senior vice president of Worldwide Commercial and Partner Sales.

Hogan held various top executive roles at Cisco from 2002 to 2017, including global vice president of Digital Transformation Group and vice president of Business Transformation. Most recently, Hogan was executive vice president and the Americas managing director for Rackspace.


Hrvatski Telekom

Hrvatski Telekom Promotes VPs

From August 1, Marijana Bačić and Jerko Dumanić will assume the new, vice-presidential positions in Hrvatski Telekom.

Marijana Bačić, who has been the Director of the Corporate Sales Sector since November 2017, will take over the new position of Vice President for Corporate Sales and ICT, while the current Director of the Business Marketing Sector Jerko Dumanić will take over as Vice President for VSE/SME, Business Marketing & Channel Management.

Marijana Bačić started her professional career in 2001 in Hrvatski Telekom as an Expert in the Data and IP Services Department. After years of working abroad for Stonepath Group and Solomon Smith Barney in the USA and Sweden, Jerko Dumanić joined Hrvatski Telekom in 2002, and has since held several management positions within the Hrvatski Telekom Group. 

From August 1, 2020, the Management Board of Hrvatski Telekom will comprise of five members, as follows: Kostas Nebis (CEO), President of the Management Board, Ivan Bartulović (CHRO), Member of the Management Board in charge of Human Resources, Daniel Daub (CFO), Member of the Management Board in charge of Finance, Boris Drilo (CTIO), Member of the Management Board in charge of Technical and Information functions and Nataša Rapaić (CCO), Member of the Management Board in charge of Residential Customers.



Russian service provider ER-Telecom has named a new chairman and set about reorganising its structure across the country.

The service provider has named Andrey Semerikov as chairman, replacing Elena Ivashentseva who will continue to sit on the company’s board.

Semerikov served as CEO of ER-Telecom from 2001-18, after which he became deputy chairman. He also serves as the vice-president of the Russian Cable Television Association.

ER-Telecom has also initiated the process of consolidating 38 city-based divisions into 14 larger inter-regional units, according to local reports. The move is designed to simplify management of the company and increase the speed with which key decisions are taken.


Indigo Telecom

Indigo continues recruitment drive with the addition of two seasoned telecoms professionals

Indigo Telecom Group Limited, the UK-based global provider of telecom and data centre network support services, announces two senior additions to the leadership team as part of the company’s ongoing expansion plans and recruitment drive. Chris Newall, a telecoms executive with over 20 years of experience, joins as Chief Commercial Officer; and Mark Orchart is named Group Product and Bid Director after nearly three years working in operations and sales for the group.

Most recently, Newall was part of the EMEA leadership team with telecommunications networking equipment and software services supplier Ciena, where he helped drive significant growth and commercial success. Newall has also worked for STC Telecommunications and Nortel, where he built several successful sales teams and delivered transformational wins and complex solutions in hardware, software and professional services.

In the telecoms industry for over 25 years, Mark Orchart is now Indigo Telecom Group’s Product and Bid Director and becomes part of the leadership team. During his time in the industry, Orchart has worked with some of the biggest players including Ericsson, Telecity and Alcatel. His ability to drive strategic growth has also helped develop many small businesses and led them to commercial success.



Oliver Coughlan to lead Digicel’s Caribbean and Central America operations

Caribbean-based Digicel Group announced Jean-Yves Charlier was stepping down as CEO citing personal reasons, with the head of its Pacific operation Oliver Coughlan lined up as his replacement.

Charlier assumed the role in January 2019 and will remain as a non-executive director, the operator said in a statement. Coughlan will assume the top spot in Digicel’s Caribbean and Central America operations, suggesting a replacement for the Pacific unit will be sought.

Coughlan brings more than 20 years senior management experience, including at the Pacific unit where he oversaw operations in Fiji, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu.

He joined Digicel from Malaysian telecoms infrastructure company Edotco Group, where he was COO.



Cisco names Luke Power to head ANZ channel

Cisco has tapped Luke Power to run its local channel following the departure of former channel chief Tara Ridley in early May.

The networking and security giant confirmed to CRN that it promoted from within to find its new channel chief in ANZ, elevating Power from his previous role as head of small business and distribution. Power’s new title is director, partner organisation and small business, Cisco Australia & New Zealand.

The appointment comes just over three years since Power joined Cisco as NSW regional manager. At the time he came from endpoint security vendor McAfee where he was first in charge of channel sales, then ran the vendor’s inside sales business. Prior to McAfee, Power worked for telecommunications vendor Avaya where he held senior positions as acting managing director and then chief of operations.



GTT Appoints Ernie Ortega Interim Chief Executive Officer, Expands Executive Leadership Team

GTT Communications has announced that GTT’s Chief Revenue Officer Ernie Ortega has been named as the interim CEO while the Board continues its search for a new CEO. The Board of Directors also announces that Don MacNeil has joined the GTT leadership team as chief operating officer (COO). Mr. MacNeil will lead GTT’s network operations, service delivery, assurance and vendor management teams, as well as GTT’s product organization.

Mr. Ortega joined GTT in June 2019 as division president, Americas, and has extensive industry experience with a strong record of delivering revenue growth. Prior to joining GTT, Mr. Ortega was CEO of Towerstream and previously held senior executive roles at Colt Technology Services, Cogent, and XO Communications, after beginning his career at MCI.

Prior to joining GTT, Mr. MacNeil was chief executive officer (CEO) at FiberLight, after having served as COO, driving its business of designing, building and optimizing fiber-optic networks. He has held several executive leadership roles over his career including COO, CMO and head of customer operations for managed network provider XO Communications. Mr. MacNeil also served as chief technology officer (CTO) for EdgeConneX, a global data center solutions provider.



MTN Group announces new CEOs for MTN Cameroon and MTN Benin

MTN Group announces the appointment of new chief executive officers for two of its West African operations, MTN Cameroon and MTN Benin. Stephen Blewett, the current CEO of MTN Benin, will take the helm at MTN Cameroon on 1 August 2020 when Uche Ofodile, the current CEO of MTN Liberia, will become the CEO of MTN Benin.

Stephen has for five years led MTN Benin, an operation of 5,5 million subscribers. He replaces Hendrik Kasteel, who left the group in March. Since then, MTN Cameroon chief financial officer Ebenezer Bodylawson has been acting CEO, steering the operation of more than 10 million subscribers.

Uche joined MTN in 2018. Since then, she has repositioned MTN Liberia as a competitive player in the market and grown its customer base to 1,45 million. The group is in the process of appointing a new CEO for MTN Liberia and will make an announcement in this regard as soon as the process is finalised.


TPx Communications

TPx Appoints Don Joos as Chief Executive Officer

TPx Communications announced that its board of directors has named Don Joos, a proven leader with more than 20 years of experience in the technology industry, as chief executive officer, effective immediately. Mr. Joos succeeds Joe Cozzolino, who has served as interim CEO during the board’s search for a CEO. Mr. Cozzolino will continue to serve as executive chairman of the board of TPx.

Mr. Joos brings to TPx a deep industry knowledge and a strong track record of transforming high-tech companies. Most recently, he served as the CEO of PGi, the world’s largest dedicated provider of collaboration software and services, and, like TPx, a portfolio company of Siris Capital Group, LLC (“Siris”). Prior to joining PGi in 2017, Don served as President and CEO of ShoreTel, driving the strategic transformation of the business from a pure hardware solution into one of the leading cloud communications providers.

TPx Communications also announced that telecom industry veteran Ken McMahon has joined the company in the newly created role of Senior Vice President of Customer Success, which makes customer centricity a strategic focus in TPx’s ongoing transformation.

McMahon joins TPx from Vonage where he developed a Global Customer Success organization supporting unified communications as a service (UCaaS) and contact center as a service (CCaaS) customers. In this role, McMahon oversaw all customer implementations, care and technical support and customer success. Previously, McMahon spent seven years at CenturyLink where he held a number of senior-leadership roles in sales, field operations and capital investment, among others. 



Vonage Appoints Industry Veteran Curt Allen as Channel Chief

 Vonage has announced that industry veteran Curt Allen will join the Company as Senior Vice President and Channel Chief, effective July 13, 2020. 

Allen has more than two decades of Channel experience in the tech industry, having been both a Master Agent and a leader of Channel programs with large technology providers.

Prior to joining Vonage, Allen was with Windstream, where he held various sales senior leadership roles, including SVP, Channel Chief & President of Strategic Channels. Prior to Windstream, Allen was President & Part Owner of X4 Solutions, leading a national master agency to multi-million-dollar profitability, and ultimately a profitable exit for stakeholders. Following the acquisition of X4 Solutions by Sandler Partners, the fastest growing distributor of connectivity and cloud services in America, Allen continued in the role as President of Channel, ensuring a smooth transition for all stakeholders and retaining all active sales partners.


Vodafone NZ

Vodafone NZ appoints Richard Mooney as Chief Strategy Officer



Nextiva Appoints Eric Martorano, Former Microsoft GM, as Chief Revenue Officer


Telecom Namibia

Telecom replaces board without interviews

The Namibia Post and Telecom Holdings (NPTH) has rushed a decision to appoint interim board members for Telecom Namibia before the closing date for applications. Although positions on the board were advertised as per normal procedure, the appointments were concluded this week.

The interim board members are Frieda Kishi, Ndeunyema Shiwana, Elizabeth Joseph, Jerry Muadinhohamba and Fernando Somaeb. The new members replaced Irene Simeon-Kurtz, Damoline Muruko, Petro Oberholster and Willem Titus.

Somaeb, who previously served as chairperson of the board, was demoted to the position of deputy chairperson, while Muadinhohamba takes over as chairperson.

Minister of public enterprises Leon Jooste yesterday said the decision to appoint these board members was motivated by the speedy dismantling of NPTH. Jooste said the board would only serve for the next six months until December.



Top CenturyLink Channel Exec Unexpectedly Out

Lisa Miller left CenturyLink on June 1 to pursue other opportunities, according to CenturyLink. 

Miller was CenturyLink’s president of wholesale, indirect and SME. She joined CenturyLink in November 2017 and was with Level 3 Communications for more than 11 years. CenturyLink completed its acquisition of Level 3 that same November.

Ed Morche, CenturyLink’s president of North America enterprise and public sector, is taking over leadership duties for the indirect organization. His role is expanding to include leading the indirect sales organization, in addition to North America enterprise and public sector. Morche also was with Level 3 prior to joining CenturyLink. He was with Level 3 for 16 years and joined CenturyLink a month before the Level 3 acquisition closed.

This is a permanent position. Garrett Gee remains CenturyLink‘s channel chief.



KPN nominates Alejandro Plater to the Supervisory Board to succeed Carlos García Moreno Elizondo

KPN’s Supervisory Board announces that it has nominated Mr Alejandro Plater for appointment to the Supervisory Board of KPN as designate by América Móvil. Mr Plater will succeed Mr Carlos García Moreno Elizondo who has decided to step down as member of the Supervisory Board for personal reasons.

Mr García Moreno Elizondo, currently Chief Financial Officer of América Móvil, joined the Supervisory Board of KPN in 2013 designated by América Móvil pursuant to specific arrangements in relation to the shareholding of América Móvil in KPN. Within the Supervisory Board he serves as a member of the Audit Committee and the Strategy & Organization Committee.

Mr Plater is currently Chief Operating Officer of A1 Telekom Austria Group, to which position he was first appointed in March 2015. Between 1 August 2015 and 31 August 2018, he was Chief Executive Officer at A1 Telekom Austria Group. Prior to joining A1 Telekom Austria Group, Mr. Plater worked at insurance companies Sud America Seguros, Chubb & Son and – lastly – at Ericsson, where he held various positions as director and vice president.



MediaKind appoints Matt McConnell as Chief Executive Officer


Virgin Media

Virgin Media Ireland appoints Paul Higgins as new Vice-President of Commercial


Virgin Media Ireland has appointed Paul Higgins as Vice-President of Commercial at Virgin Media. Paul Higgins has been with Virgin Media for five years, most recently in the position of Consumer Director. Prior to joining Virgin Media, Paul held senior level commercial positions in the Telecommunications, Media, Technology and FMCG sectors in Ireland, the UK and Australia. 

 In his new board–level appointment, Paul will oversee all aspects of Virgin Media’s commercial strategy including sales, marketing, product delivery, and digital channels and will continue to drive growth in the company’s entertainment, connectivity and mobile business.



FiberLight has appointed Jim Lynch as interim Chief Executive Officer.

FiberLight, LLC announces that Jim Lynch, Executive Chairman of FiberLight, will serve as the company’s interim Chief Executive Officer until a permanent CEO is appointed.

Lynch’s proven experience with FiberLight, where he previously served as the company’s CEO, makes him ideally prepared to guide FiberLight as it continues to support clients and deliver strategic fiber solutions to meet evolving requirements and network growth trajectories. In addition to Lynch’s role at FiberLight, Lynch is a co-founder and Managing Partner of Thermo Capital Partners. Lynch was Executive Chairman and CEO of Xspedius Communications LLC, a successful fiber solutions provider.



Drew Mullin Named Everstream Executive Vice President, Corporate Development

Everstream announced that it has named Drew Mullin as Executive Vice President, Corporate Development.

In this newly created role, Mullin will lead a team to analyze Everstream’s network, new and existing markets, the broader industry and competitive landscape to build a cadence of decision making that pushes Everstream to overachieve its goals. He will oversee the market data that Everstream employees use to make day-to-day decisions and to guide the company’s go-to-market strategy. Mullin will serve as a key member of the executive team, reporting to Everstream President and CEO Brett Lindsey.

Most recently, Mullin served as the head of Business Development and Strategy for Crown Castle. In this role, he supported the company’s efforts to provide best-in-class service across all sales channels and throughout its North American metro markets.




Have we missed anything? Email us at or comment directly under this post if there is a leadership announcement we should have included in our weekly roundups.

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