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GTB announces the industry’s CFOs to watch in 2013
25 February 2013
The telecoms CFO needs a rare blend of capabilities, writes George Malim: financial expertise, telecoms knowledge and the ability to think strategically and act with authority
chief financial officers
Global Telecoms Business has announced its 50 CFOs to watch in
2013. This is our third annual survey of the 50 CFOs to
watch in the telecoms industry. As in previous years, the list
is restricted to the CFOs of telecoms operators only —
This selection is not by market capitalisation or by sales or
by number of operations. While there are a lot more than 50
excellent CFOs in the industry, the 50 here have been selected
as ones to watch because we believe they will play an
increasingly important role in the industry’s
development over the coming decade.
Career background of top
| Other industries
CFOs in the telecoms
industry. Source: GTB
Some have demonstrated their ability to conclude successful
mergers or acquisitions at the highest level and to integrate
the financial departments of disparate organisations on
different continents. Others are dealing with the strategic
challenges associated with investing to address new business
models as their core revenue streams commoditise.
Some, such as Mark Ferrari, the CFO of Colt Technology
Services, don’t even see themselves as working for
an operator anymore. The company now describes itself as a
provider of integrated business telecoms and IT services
— and that alters the focus of the CFO.
"CFOs working in the telecoms sector are grappling with a
complex environment that mixes the effects of globalisation
with changing customer purchasing behaviours," says Ferrari.
"It is no longer about selling circuits; your differentiation
is in the end-to-end service experience you are able to
provide. While this is an automated transactional experience
for some, it can also be about a compelling solution for
New skill sets
He adds: "IT, data centre and networking integration means
you’ll see business and efficiency opportunities
increasing, but this also raises challenges that require new
skill sets. The evolving technology landscape, coupled with an
increasingly competitive environment, means things are moving
at a rapid pace. As a result, the fundamentals of focusing on
generating a good return on your capital investment, taking
appropriately calculated risks and balancing opex/capex cost
structures, have never been more important."
Mark Evans, the CFO of Telefónica UK, also highlights
the role CFOs have in making the company attractive to
"The role of the CFO has evolved to being more than the
financial conscience and gatekeeper of the company to include
strategic thinking, advice and guidance to the CEO," he
explains. "An in-depth understanding of your market and how
this will develop, as well as appreciating the demands and
expectations of customers are now essential skills. These help
you optimise near term operational performance while creating a
compelling equity story that attracts investment for future
For several years now it has been clear that the role of the
CFO is changing. While mastering the numbers remains a critical
element of the role, CFOs are doing far more than simply
preparing accounts and engaging in financial planning.
"You must have an excellent grasp on the numbers so at any time
you are able to talk eloquently around them both internally and
externally," says Catherine Birkett, the CFO of Interoute. "It
is vital you have gravitas and great presentation skills."
Accounting, though, is now just one of the skills a CFO must
have and few are engaged in minute management of profit and
Future business strategy
"The CFO role has evolved from accounting to finance," points
out NiQ Lai, the CFO of Hong Kong Broadband Network.
"Accounting is about closing the books after the event. Finance
is about understanding the future business strategy and
providing the necessary funding to execute on the strategy."
In addition, the CFO has become a critical strategic thinker.
"Beyond just having financial skills, the CFO should be a
strategic partner to the CEO," says Ferrari. "This should be
about adapting, influencing and most importantly, leading the
overall organisation. In this role the CFO must exhibit a
strong commercial sense, a fundamental awareness of the
marketplace and a balanced risk assessment of the
Setting an enabling strategy is at the heart of the
CFO’s job for Birkett as well. "Although the CFO
will always have responsibility for production of numbers and
ensuring robust financial controls are in place, it is my team
who deal with those on issues on a day-to-day basis," she
Ferrari agrees: "You’re not expected to be just a
numbers guy. You’re an agent of change with a
leadership hat on," he says.
Lai goes further. "Financial expertise has become just a basic
hygiene factor," he says. "On top of financial expertise, the
CFO must have a strong operational understanding and be able to
articulate this in financial terms."
That’s of increased importance because it is the
CFO who goes to the capital markets to access funding to
execute on the strategy. "The CFO is also the main conduit
between the company and capital markets," Lai adds. "A good CFO
should be able to arbitrage different elements in the capital
markets, for example bonds versus equity, different
geographical listing locations, private equity versus public
markets and others."
Evans at Telefónica agrees: "The CFO will also be a key
contributor to the equity story and vision for the company," he
says. "Stepping back from the day-to-day [operations] to look
across the markets, appreciate changing customer behaviour and
future technologies are all CFO responsibilities. One aspect is
guaranteed, change is inevitable."
CEOs in waiting
Some CFOs on our list are being prepared to assume CEO
positions, such as Gervais Pellisier at France Telecom-Orange.
One even stepped up to the acting CEO position while we were
preparing this year’s list. Per-Arne Blomquist,
until recently just executive vice president and CFO of
Telia-Sonera, is now also acting CFO following the resignation
of CEO Lars Nyberg after a report into allegations about the
operator’s Ukrainian business.
That underlines how, in many businesses, the CFO is regarded as
the next in line should the CEO become indisposed.
Others combine the role of group CFO with being leaders of
business units or an operator within the group. Richard Moat,
the CFO of Eircom group, for example, adds leadership of the
Irish operator’s mobile unit Meteor to his main
He’s been a chief executive before, leading
Orange’s businesses in Thailand and Denmark. His
previous experience as deputy chief executive of France Telecom
and Deutsche Telekom’s UK joint venture,
Everything Everywhere, is typical of the complex strategic
roles CFOs now take.
Some CFOs are encouraged to augment their roles with
directorships in other companies in separate industries. That
gives them a wider understanding of how industries outside
telecoms operate and of the wider business climate. The rule
seems to be that there’s no such thing as bad
Others have spent entire careers in the same company. That
needn’t be seen as a bad thing. NTT DoCoMo CFO,
Kazuto Tsubouchi has been with NTT since 1976 and served in a
variety of roles. He also serves as a member of the board of
That trend may be coming to an end, though. Fully 40% of our 50
CFOs to watch have assumed their positions within the last
three years. These are complex positions, though, and
executives tend to stay in them for substantial periods.
Carlos Garcia, the CFO of América Móvil, for
example, has been in his position since 2001 and Sunit Patel
has been CFO of Level 3 for almost a decade.
Our 50 CFOs to watch this year, have professional backgrounds
that are not dissimilar to what they would have been 10 or 20
years ago: 56% started their careers in the accountancy or
banking industries and few — just 12% — have
spent their entire career in telecoms.
We expect that percentage to dwindle further, along with those
who have a background in the government sector, as operators
move further from their roots as government-owned entities.
That’s borne out by that fact that 16% of our CFOs
already come to telecoms from other industries.
Outside industries bring different perspectives which will be
especially important as telecoms engages in multi-directional
business models involving third parties in media, banking and
transport, for example.
Those new entrants will need to establish understanding of
telecoms quickly if they are to perform their roles
"Having industry knowledge is becoming more and more critical
and, even though a CFO’s skills will always be
transferable, you will have to be able to demonstrate a solid
understanding of the business from day one," adds Birkett.
Birkett herself has a background in transaction services at
KPMG. In fact, the majority of our CFOs have started their
careers in accountancy firms or in accountancy functions in
other organisations. The firms Deloitte, KPMG and Ernst &
Young crop up often in our CFOs’ biographies and
10% of this year’s 50 have worked at
PricewaterhouseCoopers for at least some of their careers.
That financial acumen is vital, even for those such as Cox
Communications’ Mark Bowser, whose career path
began not at a big four accountancy firm, but at the FBI. Even
there, Bowser’s focus was on investigating white
collar crime, skills an operator’s fraud
department would no doubt find valuable.
That spread of financial expertise, telecoms knowledge
— and the ability to think strategically and act with
authority — makes the telecoms CFO somebody with a
rare blend of capabilities.
"There are many excellent accountants who can understand and
analyse numbers," says Birkett. But "there are very few good
CFOs who have the numerical and financial skills alongside
those of business leadership."
Many of this year’s 50 telecoms CFOs to watch will
be speaking at GTB’s CFOs’ summit,
which takes place in London on 22 May 2013. For details, see
The list in full
- America Movil — Carlos Jose Garcia
- AT&T — John Stephens
- Bharti Airtel — Srikanth
- BT — Tony Chanmugam
- CenturyLink — Stewart Ewing
- China Mobile — Xue Taohai
- China Telecom — Wu Andi
- China Unicom — Li Fushen
- Clearwire — Hope Cochran
- Colt — Mark Ferrari
- Cox Communications — Mark Bowser
- Deutsche Telekom — Timotheus
- Eircom — Richard Moat
- Everything Everywhere — Neal
- Etisalat — Serkan Okandan
- France Telecom — Gervais
- Helios Towers — Andrés de
- Hong Kong Broadband Network — NiQ
- Iliad — Thomas Reynaud
- Interoute — Catherine Birkett
- KPN — Eric Hageman
- Level 3 — Sunit Patel
- MTNL — Anita Soni
- MTS — Alexey Kornya
- NTT — Yoshikiyo Sakai
- NTT DoCoMo — Kazuto Tsubouchi
- OTE — Babis Mazarakis
- PCCW — Susanna Hui
- Rogers Communications — Anthony
- Rostelecom — Anton Khozyainov
- SFR — Philippe Trotot
- Singapore Telecom — Jeann Low
- Sprint — Joseph Euteneuer
- T-Systems — Klaus Werner
- Tata Communications — Sanjay
- Telecom Italia — Piergiorgio
- Telefonica — Ángel
- Telekom Austria — Hans Tschuden
- Telkom South Africa — Jacques
- Telia-Sonera — Per-Arne
- Telenor — Richard Olav Aa
- Telus — John Gossling
- Three UK — Richard Woodward
- Türk Telecom — Murat
- Verizon — Francis Shammo
- Verizon Wireless — Andrew Davies
- VimpelCom — Henk van Dalen
- Vodacom — Ivan Dittrich
- Vodafone — Andy Halford
- Zain — Ossama Matta
Eight new appointments
Richard Moat has been chief financial officer of the Eircom
group since September 2012. Prior to joining the Irish operator
he served as deputy chief executive of Everything Everywhere,
the UK mobile joint venture of Deutsche Telekom and France
Telecom. He has also served as CFO of the joint venture and
before that was CEO of Orange Thailand and Orange Denmark.
He joined Orange in 1992 as a senior manager in the finance
function, before becoming corporate finance director and
international group director of finance. In his early career he
served as an analyst for Sedgewick and for Lloyds of London. In
his current role he also runs Eircom’s mobile
Andrés de Orléans-Borbón
Andrés de Orléans-Borbón joined Helios
Towers Africa in January 2012 and is responsible for all
finance, IT and business development activities. Prior to
Helios Towers, he was a vice president at Helios Investment
Partners focusing on all tower investments including Helios
Towers Nigeria, the inception of Helios Towers Africa and all
subsequent sale and lease back transactions.
Prior to joining Helios Investment Partners, he was an
associate in the leverage finance team at JPMorgan where he
participated in more than 15 large financings. He holds a
management engineering degree from the Polytechnic of
Yoshikiyo Sakai joined Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Public
Corporation in April 1980. In July 2002, he became a senior
director of the finance department of mobile operator NTT
DoCoMo. In June 2005, he became a managing director of the
mobile company’s investor relations department. In
July 2008, he became a managing director of the public
relations department of NTT DoCoMo, becoming a senior vice
president and managing director of the department in June 2009.
In June 2012, he was elected to his current position of senior
vice president and director of the finance and accounting
department of NTT.
Babis Mazarakis assumed the position of OTE group chief
financial officer on July 1 2012. Before joining OTE, he was
group chief financial officer of the National Bank of Greece,
which is listed on the Athens and New York Stock Exchanges.
From 2008 until 2010 he was CFO and member of the group
executive committee of Titan Cement Company, which is listed on
the Athens Stock Exchange.
From 1999 to 2008, he served in various executive positions in
the Vodafone group. Initially, he was group CFO and member of
the board in Greece (1999-2006), then CEO in Hungary (2006-07).
In 2007 he returned to Greece as COO and vice-chairman of the
board of Vodafone Greece.
Anthony Staffieri was appointed executive vice president and
chief financial officer of Rogers Communications in April 2012.
He brings to the Rogers organisation more than 25 years of
financial and executive leadership experience.
Before joining Rogers, he was senior vice president of finance
for Bell Canada Enterprises. He joined BCE in 2005 from
Celestica International, where he served in various senior
financial roles for the period 1999 to 2005. He was a partner
with PricewaterhouseCoopers, where he began his career, leaving
the firm in 1999 to join the executive leadership team of his
then client Celestica.
Piergiorgio Peluso is head of administration, finance and
control at Telecom Italia. He joined the operator in September
2012, having been CEO of UniCredit Corporate Banking and head
of corporate and investment banking Italy at UniCredit Group.
Before that he served as central director of Capitalia, central
director of advisory area at Medio Credito Central. He has held
positions with Credit Suisse First Boston and Mediobanca. He
began his career as an accountant with Arthur Andersen &
John Gossling joined Telus’s leadership team on 12
November 2012 as executive vice-president and chief financial
officer. Until the end of 2012, Gossling worked with retiring
EVP and CFO, Bob McFarlane, to ensure an effective transition
with respect to the leadership of the Telus finance team.
Before Telus, Gossling served three years as the CFO of
CTVglobemedia, leading all financial activities for the
company. Previously, he held senior leadership roles with
Rogers Communications for eight years, including CFO at Rogers
Wireless, and he was a partner at KPMG.
Murat Kirkgöz was appointed as Türk Telekom CFO on
October 9, 2012. He started his career at Koç Group in
1996. He joined Aria in 2001 and he served in various roles in
finance department until merger of the company with Aycell
forming Avea in 2004. He served as budget and control director
(2005), interim chief financial officer (2009) and finance
transformation director (2010). Afterwards, he was transferred
to Oger Telecom in 2011 as deputy CFO, group financial
10 from Asia and the Pacific
Srikanth Balachander joined Bharti Airtel as CFO in November
2008. In April 2011, he took over the role of global CFO
following the group’s acquisition of
Zain’s African businesses. Balachander is
currently leading a finance transformation programme including
Africa integration, global shared services, process excellence
He worked for Unilever for more than 23 years before joining
Bharti Airtel, joining Hindustan Unilever in 1985 as a
management trainee, he performed various finance and cross
functional roles. In 2005, he moved to Unilever’s
head office in London to lead a global finance transformation
programme involving 550 legal entities across 120 countries,
partnering with IBM, CapGemini and Deloitte.
Xue Taohai has been vice president and chief financial officer
of China Mobile since July 2002. He assists the chief executive
officer in relation to the corporate financial management of
China Mobile Hong Kong. Previously he served as the deputy
director general of the finance department of the former
Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, deputy director
general of the department of financial adjustment and clearance
of the Ministry of Information Industry and deputy director
general of the former Directorate General of
Wu Andi serves as the chief financial officer of China Telecom.
Prior to joining the operator in May 2000, Wu served as
director general of the department of economic adjustment and
communication settlement of the Chinese Ministry of Information
Industry. Wu has over 21 years of financial experience in the
telecoms industry in China.
She graduated in 1983 from the Beijing Institute of Economics
and has studied in a post-graduate programme in business
economics management at the Chinese Institute of Social
Li Fushen was appointed chief financial officer in 2011 having
previously served China Unicom as a senior vice president. He
joined China Unicom from Netcom where he held several C-level
positions including CFO. Li has worked in the telecoms industry
since 2001 and has served as a non-executive director at Hong
Kong’s PCCW since 2007. He has a
master’s degree in management and degree in
Hong Kong Broadband Network
NiQ Lai is chief financial officer, company secretary and head
of talent engagement at Hong Kong Broadband Network, the
fibre-to-the home-network that Hong Kong’s City
Telecom recently sold to private equity group CVC. He joined
the City Telecom group in May 2004 and has over 20 years of
experience in the telecoms industry, research and finance.
Prior to joining the group, Lai was director and head of Asia
telecom research for Credit Suisse and was involved in numerous
global fund raisings for a wide range of Asian telecoms
operators such as China Mobile, China Telecom, China Unicom, SK
Telecom, PCCW and Telekom Malaysia.
Before that, he held positions with Hongkong Telecom —
now known as PCCW — and Kleinwort Benson Securities
(Asia). Lai holds a bachelor of commerce degree from the
University of Western Australia and an executive master of
business administration degree from Kellogg-HKUST.
Anita Soni took over as director of finance at MTNL in April
2005. She is gold medallist of Punjab University in the MA
economics (honours) school. Her career has included extensive
and comprehensive experience in the telecoms sector and
financial management. She held important position in the
Department of Telecommunications, BSNL and at Indian regulator
She worked with major financial institutions like ICICI and
IDBI to prepare a report on funding requirement s for private
and public sector telecoms projects.
Kazuto Tsubouchi was named senior executive vice president
responsible for global business, corporate and corporate social
responsibility at NTT DoCoMo in June 2012. He retained his
position as CFO of the operator, which he has held since June
2008. Tsubouchi joined NTT in April 1976 after graduating with
a degree in law.
In 200, he became general manager of the Kanazawa branch (NTT
West) and has held a series of other senior positions across
Susanna Hui has been the group chief financial officer of PCCW
since April 2007 and holds directorships in various PCCW group
companies. She is also an executive director of HKT and HKT
Management. Before that, she was director of finance of PCCW,
with responsibility for the telecoms services sector and
Prior to joining Cable & Wireless HKT, which was acquired
by PCCW in September 1999, she was the chief financial officer
of a listed company engaged in hotel and property investment
Ngiap Jong (Jeann) Low
Jeann Low was appointed group chief financial officer of
SingTel in September 2008. She oversees the
group’s financial affairs including corporate
finance, treasury, risk management and capital management and
investor relations. She was previously CFO of Optus from 2006.
She joined SingTel in 1998 as the group financial controller.
In 2004, she was promoted to executive vice president of
strategic investments managing the group’s
international investments. Prior to SingTel, Low worked at an
international accounting firm and thereafter in a public listed
electronics company in Singapore.
Sanjay Baweja is chief financial officer of Tata
Communications, part of the $100 billion Tata companies. He is
responsible for strategic financial management of the company
including financial reporting and compliance, treasury and fund
management, financial planning and analysis, management
assurance, taxation and procurement and other functions.
Prior to Tata Communications, Baweja served in Emaar MGF Land
as executive president for corporate affairs and chief risk
officer. He has also worked in several roles in Bharti Airtel,
Xerox Modicorp, Digital Equipment and Ballarpur
10 from the Americas
Carlos Jose Garcia Moreno Elizondo
Carlos José García Moreno Elizondo has been the
chief financial officer at América Móvil since
2001. Before joining América Móvil, Garcia was
the director general of public credit at the Mexican Ministry
of Finance, where he was directly responsible for all internal
and external debt management for the Mexican government.
Previously, he held various positions at Teléfonos de
México (Telmex), including the operating manager at
From 1995 to July 1997, he was responsible for the Mexican
investment banking business of Swiss Bank Corporation. He
served as the managing director of UBS Warburg and associate
director of financing at Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex). By
1990, he was responsible for all market-based funding for
Pemex. He has been a director of Telecomunicaciones de Puerto
Rico since 2007.
John Stephens is senior executive vice president and chief
financial officer responsible for directing financial planning,
accounting, tax, auditing, investment management, financing and
investor and shareowner relations for AT&T. He was
appointed to his current position in June 2011.
Previously, he served as senior vice president and controller
responsible for all financial reporting and operations,
accounting policy, business planning, and regulatory reporting
for AT&T. Prior to joining the company, Stephens served as
a tax senior manager with Ernst & Young in St Louis. His
career also includes serving as a member of the tax staff of
Peat Marwick & Mitchell in Kansas City. He has served on
the board of directors of Telmex and América
Stewart Ewing is executive vice president and CFO of
CenturyLink. He has played a key role in the
company’s acquisition strategy by negotiating all
stages of purchase agreements from legal and regulatory to
folding new companies into the corporate structure and
philosophy. The acquisitions of Qwest and Savvis have seen
CenturyLink grow rapidly in recent years. Ewing joined
CenturyLink as vice president of finance in 1983.
Hope Cochran is CFO of Clearwire. Since joining Clearwire in
November 2005, Cochran has been instrumental in leading
Clearwire through its IPO and raising $11.5 billion in debt and
equity funding. Prior to Clearwire, she served as CFO of Evant,
a planning and logistics software developer that was
subsequently sold to Manhattan Associates.
Cochran also served as controller of the Americas sales
operations for PeopleSoft, a developer of enterprise software
solutions for large corporations and governments that was later
sold to Oracle. She began her career as an auditor at Deloitte
& Touche. She holds degrees in economics and music from
Mark Bowser is executive vice president and chief financial
officer of Cox Communications. He oversees accounting and
financial planning and analysis, mergers and acquisitions and
programming. He also is responsible for legal, regulatory and
Over his 30-year career, Bowser has been responsible for a
portfolio of diverse strategic areas including finance,
operations, sales, marketing and business development for
several Fortune 500 companies. He has held an extensive number
of senior level financial positions including accounting,
financial analysis, and mergers and acquisitions at companies
such as Sprint.
He began his career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation
investigating white-collar crime.
Sunit Patel is executive vice president and chief financial
officer for Level 3. He joined the company in 2003 and was
named CFO in May of that year.
Patel was formerly CFO and a co-founder of Looking Glass
Networks, a facilities-based provider of metropolitan telecoms
transport services. Prior to co-founding Looking Glass, Patel
was treasurer of MCI WorldCom from 1997 to 2000. From 1994 to
1997, he was treasurer of MFS Communications, a competitive
local exchange carrier acquired by WorldCom.
Joseph Euteneuer was appointed Sprint’s chief
financial officer in April 2011. In this role, he manages the
company’s day-to-day financial operations and
long-term financial strategy and planning. Prior to joining
Sprint, Euteneuer served as chief financial officer and
executive vice president of Qwest Communications from 2008
until its merger with CenturyLink, where he led the growth in
value creation for the business, which transformed the capital
market and investor community’s perception of the
Before serving as Qwest’s CFO, Euteneuer was
executive vice president and chief financial officer of XM
Satellite Radio Holdings, a satellite radio provider, from 2002
until September 2008, after it merged with Sirius Satellite
Radio. Before joining XM, Euteneuer held various management
positions at Comcast and its subsidiary, Broadnet Europe. He
began his career in public accounting with Deloitte and has
also worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Fran Shammo is executive vice president and chief financial
officer for Verizon Communications, responsible for the
company’s finance and strategic planning
operations, and financial transaction services. Before being
appointed to his position, in November 2010, he was president
and chief executive officer of Verizon Telecom and Business,
responsible for sales, marketing and customer service
excellence for the company’s consumer,
small-business, enterprise and wholesale customers worldwide.
Shammo joined Bell Atlantic Mobile in 1989 as general manager
for accounting operations, and later held a series of positions
of increasing responsibility in finance, mergers and
acquisitions, logistics, facilities, regional operations and
planning. He acquired public accounting, retail and tax
experience before entering the wireless industry.
Andrew Davies is vice president and chief financial officer for
Verizon Wireless, in which Vodafone holds a 45% stake. As the
company’s controller, he is responsible for
financial analysis and planning, auditing, tax, treasury,
revenue assurance, customer financial services, cost
transformation and business strategy organizations.
Davies previously served as CFO of Vodafone Essar, the Indian
subsidiary of Vodafone group with operations across India.
Davies joined Vodafone in September 2003 and has held a number
of senior positions within the group, including CFO of Vodafone
Turkey, finance director for Vodafone Japan, and head of
finance for the consumer business unit in Vodafone UK. He also
spent several years in various financial roles for GE,
Honeywell and Singlepoint before joining Vodafone.
Four from the Middle East and Africa
Serkan Okandan is CFO of the Etisalat group. He joined from
Turkcell where he served as group CFO and acting CEO of the
operator’s Ukrainian operation in 2010. Prior to
his appointment as a group CFO to Turkcell, he was entrusted
with the job of group financial controller and head of
reporting division at the company.
In his prior assignment as a group CFO he led the finance
function of a publicly quoted company Turkcell and its
operations across the eight different countries. He began his
career at PricewaterhouseCoopers in 1992.
Telkom South Africa
Jacques Schindehütte was appointed chief financial officer
of Telkom South Africa in August 2011. Prior to joining Telkom,
Schindehütte was the group financial director of the Absa
group from 2005 to 2010. He also served as general finance
manager of Transnet, chief marketing and financial manager at
Portnet — now the South African National Ports
Authority — and financial advisor at SA Transport
He has board experience, serving as a director of a number of
companies such as Absa Life Assurance, Abvest Asset Management
and Absa Short-term Insurance. He also served as chairman of
South Africa’s market risk committee and
investment committee and as member of various other
Ivan Dittrich joined Vodacom on 15 June 2012 from Datatec where
he had been the chief financial officer since May 2008 and
executive director on the board of Datatec since March 2008.
Prior to that he held a number of senior executive positions at
Datatec including that of group corporate director, corporate
finance manager and company secretary. He successfully managed
Datatec’s dual listing in London in 2006. Prior to
joining Datatec, Dittrich worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers in
London and Deloitte in South Africa.
Ossama Matta was appointed chief financial officer of Zain
group in June 2010, six years after joining the company. He
plays a critical role in the Zain group senior executive
management team, determining the group’s strategy,
and is responsible for all financial, investment and investor
He joined Zain in 2004 as the CFO of the Lebanese operation MTC
Touch, and was thereafter promoted in 2007 to CFO of Zain
Kuwait, Zain group’s mother operation and most
profitable company. In early 2008, he was again promoted to the
role of Zain group Middle East finance officer, overseeing the
operations in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, Saudi
Arabia and Sudan.
17 from Europe
Tony Chanmugam was appointed group finance director of BT in
December 2008 when he also joined the BT group board. In his
career at BT, he has established a strong reputation for cost
transformation, most recently holding two senior positions in
BT Retail, as chief financial officer and as managing director
of BT Enterprises. Prior to joining BT Retail, he was CFO and
then jointly CFO and COO for BT Global Solutions, a
business-serving multinational organisation in more than 100
countries. During this six year period the business grew from
£500 million to about £3 billion revenue. He is a
chartered management accountant.
Mark Ferrari became CFO of Colt in March 2011 having served as
a non-executive director since January 2009.
He is also an advisory board member of KVH. He was previously
chief operating officer of Fidelity Capital and Devonshire
Investors and Fidelity Broadband Group and served as chairman
of FIML Natural Resources and Backyard Farms Holding.
Prior to joining Fidelity, Ferrari was vice president of
finance at Kronos and began his career at Ernst &
Timotheus Höttges has been member of the board of
management of Deutsche Telekom responsible for finance and
controlling since 1 March 2009. From December 2006 until his
appointment as chief financial officer, he was the group board
of management member responsible for the T-Home unit. In this
position, he was in charge of fixed-network and broadband
business, as well as integrated sales and service in Germany.
Under his leadership, T-Home became the market leader in terms
of new DSL customers and developed its internet TV service,
Entertain, into a mass-market product while at the same time
stabilising its profitability.
After successfully implementing various cost-cutting programs
at T-Home and in the European mobile communications
subsidiaries, Höttges became responsible for the
group-wide Save for Service efficiency enhancement programme.
From 2005 until being appointed to the group board of
management, Höttges headed European operations as member
of the board of management of T-Mobile International. From 2000
until the end of 2004, he was managing director, finance and
controlling, before becoming chairman of the managing board of
Neal Milsom is chief financial officer for EE, responsible for
the financial management of the business, including procurement
and the supply chain of this France Telecom/Deutsche Telekom
joint venture. He is also part of the company’s
board of directors. Milsom was previously vice president of
finance for Everything Everywhere, having originally held the
same role at Orange UK for over five years. He joined Orange in
Prior to Orange, Neal was a divisional financial director for
automotive parts company Unipart Group, and held a finance role
at venture capitalist 3i. He is a chartered accountant who
started his accountancy training at
Gervais Pellissier was appointed chief executive officer
delegate of France Telecom on 1 November 2011. He joined the
France Telecom-Orange group in October 2005 to supervise the
integration of its business units in Spain and advise on
geographical integration within the group.
After the group’s executive committee was formed
in early April 2010, Pellissier continued in his role as deputy
chief executive officer of France Telecom, with responsibility
for finance and information systems. He was also in charge of
the UK joint venture, Everything Everywhere, with Deutsche
Telekom’s T-Mobile. He retained all his
pre-existing responsibilities when he became chief executive
Pellissier joined Bull in 1983, and held a range of
responsibilities in the areas of finance and management
control, in France, Africa, South America, and Eastern Europe.
He became CFO of Bull in 1998.
Prior to joining Iliad, Thomas Reynaud was a managing director
in equity capital markets at Société
Générale, responsible for the telecoms, media and
technology sector. He started his career at
Société Générale, worked in both
the Paris and New York offices, leading numerous transactions
in connection with IPOs, privatisations and equity and debt
offerings. In the last five years, Reynaud had worked closely
with Iliad as an advisor, notably managing the
group’s IPO in 2004 and convertible bond issue in
He joined the group during the summer of 2007 as head of
business development and member of the management committee
before becoming chief financial officer of Iliad in January
2008. Thomas Reynaud is a graduate of HEC and New York
Catherine Birkett as CFO has led Interoute’s
finance department since the end of 2005. She joined Interoute
in 2000 to head up the financial planning and analysis
department and was an integral part of the team that drove the
restructuring of the Interoute group in 2003 and the
acquisitions of Ebone and Cecom.
During her time as CFO, she has helped complete a further five
acquisitions including the European hosting business of Via/PSI
and most recently the Nordic video conferencing group VCG.
Prior to Interoute, Birkett gained extensive experience of
financial and commercial due diligence with KPMG Transaction
Eric Hageman was appointed chief financial officer of KPN in
July 2012. He had held the post of interim CFO, along with
Steven van Schilfgaarde, since January 2012. In addition,
Hageman has served as CEO at KPN Group Belgium.
In 2005 he joined KPN, starting as head of investor relations.
He became head of the mergers and acquisitions department in
2007. In 2008 he was appointed CFO of the mobile international
division, a position he held until the middle of 2011.
Hageman studied business economics at the University of
Maastricht and business administration at the London Business
School. He started his working career in London, where he took
on various management positions with ABN AMRO and Deutsche
Alexey Kornya was appointed to the role of vice president and
chief financial officer of MTS in June 2010. He has been at MTS
since July 2004. He started as the chief financial officer of
the Ural macro-region and since then has served in various
positions in the company.
Prior to joining MTS, Kornya worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers,
North-West Telecom, and AIG-Brunswick Capital Management. He
graduated from St Petersburg University of Economics and
Finance in 1998.
Anton Alexeyevich Khozyainov was appointed general director and
CFO in April 2009. From 1999 to 2002 he worked at Itera at the
position of financial controller. From 2002 until 2008 he held
the position of financial director in various investment funds.
From January until February 2009, Khozyainov worked at MTs
NTT— the Moscow Centre for New Telecommunications
Technologies — in the capacity of advisor of the
Pierre Trotot has been SFR’s senior executive vice
president and is also a director of SFR. He joined SFR in 1997
having been appointed special projects manager of Compagnie
Générale des Eaux in 1998. He subsequently became
Trotot is a graduate of the École des Hautes
Études Commerciales. He began his career as a special
projects manager with Arthur Andersen Audit in
Klaus Werner has been managing director of finance at T-Systems
International since June 2008. He started his career as an
economist in 1994 in T-Mobile Deutschland’s
controlling department. He initially worked on the German
business segment before joining the finance department to push
the expansion of Deutsche Telekom’s international
mobile communications business.
At the start of 1998, he took on his first management position
heading company-wide planning and reporting at
T-Mobile’s controlling department.
During the years that followed, he held various management
positions in the Deutsche Telekom Group’s finance
and controlling departments. His work focused on the
group’s worldwide mobile activities, as well as
the economic assessment of strategic matters for all business
areas of Deutsche Telekom.
Ángel Vilá joined Telefónica in 1997 as
group controller, moving on to become CFO of Telefónica
Internacional, where he led the Telebras privatisation team. In
2000, he was appointed group head of corporate development. In
this position, he executed corporate acquisitions such as O2
and Brasilcel/Vivo. Other significant transactions include
Telco SpA and Ceský Telecom, as well as the disposals of
Airwave and TPI.
Prior to joining Telefónica, he held positions at
Citigroup, McKinsey, Ferrovial and Planeta.
Telekom Austria group
Hans Tschuden has been CFO of Telekom Austria group since April
2007. Since January 2009 he has been vice chairman of the
company’s management board. He started his career
with Wienerberger group as a controller in 1989 and became
managing director of Wienerberger Rohrsysteme in Vienna in
He advanced to managing director of Keramo Wienerberger in
Belgium in 1995 and of Steinzeug clay pipe sewage systems in
Cologne in 1998. In 1999 he became a member of the Wienerberger
management committee and joined the managing board of
Wienerberger in May 2001 as CFO.
Per-Arne Blomquist is CFO and acting chief executive of
TeliaSonera having returned to the operator in 2008 to take up
the CFO role. He became acting chief executive in February
2013, when Lars Nyberg the previous chief executive resigned
following an investigation into the company’s
Ukranian operation. He first worked at Telia between 1997 and
2000 before working at SEB from 2001-06, leaving as CFO in
Blomquist started his career at Alfa Laval in 1989. He is a
board member of Lernia and of ice hockey team Djurgården
Richard Olav Aa
Before taking up the position as CFO of Telenor group, Aa
served as investment director of Arendals Fossekompani, a
listed electrical utility and investment company. He has held
various management positions in the metals and energy company
Elkem, both in Norway and the US, including the position as CFO
of Elkem from1999 to 2005, when the company was listed. He has
also been managing director of the listed investment company
Norsk Vekst and executive vice president for business
development in Bertel O Steen.
Richard Woodward joined Hutchison Whampoa’s Three
UK as chief financial officer in April 2010. He is responsible
for financial control and governance as well as providing
commercial and strategic support to the business. Woodward also
has responsibility for Three’s wholesale and
carrier services business.
Prior to joining Three UK, Woodward was chief financial officer
for Three Scandinavia, a position which he held for three and a
half years. Woodward has worked for Hutchison Whampoa since
1997 and held positions in operations in countries including
Hong Kong, Australia and Israel. Before joining Hutchison
Whampoa, Woodward worked in investment banking.
Henk van Dalen
Henk van Dalen is chief financial officer of VimpelCom. He
started his career in 1976 at Dutch chemical company DSM. After
several jobs in corporate management development and HR he
worked in a number of general management positions at DSM. From
2000 until 2006, he was a member of the board of management and
CFO of DSM. From April 2006 until July 2010 he was chief
financial officer and member of the board of management of
Andy Halford is chief financial officer of the Vodafone group.
He joined the operator in 1999 as financial director for the UK
operating company of Vodafone, and in 2001 he became financial
director for Vodafone’s northern Europe, Middle
East and Africa region.
In 2002, he was appointed CFO of Verizon Wireless in the US and
is a member of the board of representatives of the Verizon
Wireless partnership. Before joining Vodafone, he was group
finance director at East Midlands Electricity. He is a
non-executive director of retailer Marks and
Many of this year’s 50 telecoms CFOs to watch will
be speaking at GTB’s CFOs’ summit,
which takes place in London on 22 May 2013. For details, see