Verizon Communications Inc named Chief Technology Officer and former Ericsson boss Hans Vestberg as its new Chief Executive on Friday, saying he will replace current CEO Lowell McAdam on August 1. Current CEO Lowell McAdam will serve as executive chairman through year-end, and non-executive chairman thereafter.
Until he retires at year end, McAdam will serve as executive chairman, then become non-executive chairman, the company said in a statement.
Verizon's next CEO will be Hans Vestberg, former CEO of key supplier Ericsson, who joined Verizon as chief technology officer just over a year ago.
"I know that he has the right expertise, experience and business acumen to lead us forward and build on our strategy", McAdam noted in a note to employees.
The board of Verizon is happy about the contribution of Hans Vestberg and believes that he can take Verizon to the next level at a time when T-Mobile and Sprint are combining their businesses to take on Verizon and AT&T.
Passed over for the job was John Stratton, president of global operations. He also led the acquisitions of major media, fiber and telematics assets, including AOL Inc., Yahoo! Since that time, Verizon has made more than Dollars 120 billion in capital investments, in addition to AWS, Straight Path and other spectrum purchases, and pursued an M&A strategy focused on mobile, media and broadband services. Leveraging Verizon's unique position to drive growth, the company has returned more than $54 billion to shareholders in cash dividends since 2011. It also closed the largest technology deal of all time in 2014, buying Vodafone's 45% stake in Verizon Wireless for $130 billion.
Verizon has vowed to be the first to 5G, but has only talked about its plans to roll it out as a broadband replacement service.
The shuffle of leadership has come up due to the critical change in the wireless industry as Verizon and it's competitors are racing to bring in 5G coverage and prove the network superiority.
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