Vodafone restructures management

11 Sep 2008

Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao launched a major reorganization of the mobile phone firm's top management and business structure, making his mark after less than two months at the helm.

A Reuters report also said the world's top mobile phone company by revenue appointed a new boss for Europe, announced the departure of another top regional manager and split its emerging-markets division in two.

Vodafone appointed former France Telecom finance director Michel Combes as the new chief executive for Europe and said Paul Donovan, chief executive of the existing emerging-markets group, would leave, the Reuters report said.

The company also announced that its investment in the US firm Verizon Wireless would not be part of any region and would instead be managed at a senior level by a team including Colao.

The announcement comes after Vodafone cut its revenue outlook in July and warned that some customers were holding back from buying and using new handsets, knocking its shares and the wider sector.

Analysts welcomed the moves, saying Combes would bring an emphasis on taking further costs out of the mature European businesses, and said the time was right to divide the emerging group as it was becoming too large.

Combes, previously chairman and chief executive of private equity-backed TV and mobile transmission operator TDF Group, replaces Colao who became Vodafone group CEO at the end of July.

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