Nick Read to head Vodafone

Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao to leave after a decade in charge

"I will step down as CEO".

With fierce competition in the UK from Sky (SKY), and EE strengthened BT (BT.A) and Virgin Media, 'Vodafone UK is playing catch up, ' believes Megabuyte's Carse.

During his time at Vodafone, Colao has steered the company towards success.

Vodafone has announced that Nick Read, now the group's CFO, will succeed Vittorio Colao has the group's chief executive on October 1.

Since becoming CEO in 2008, 56-year-old Colao has been integral in Vodafone's growth into one of the biggest telecommunications companies in the world. The $130-billion sale of the company's position in Verizon Wireless in 2013 cemented his legacy as the man who shrank what was then the world's biggest mobile-phone company and cleansed it of past excesses.

"He has sorted out Vodafone's portfolio of assets through astute disposals and acquisitions, and has returned considerable amounts to shareholders", the spokesperson said.

The Board of global telco Vodafone Group has revealed the succession plan for the role of Group Chief Executive.

Vodafone has challenged the tax notice under the Netherlands-India Bilateral Investment Treaty and the matter is now arbitration.

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Vodafone India, which is merging with Idea Cellular, expects the process to be completed by June, possibly making the latest results the last on standalone basis.

"It really is an opportunity to elevate what we offer for our customers", Read said to reporters.

Colao's legacy includes pulling the company out of the U.S. by abandoning a joint venture with American telecoms giant Verizon and striking a $22 billion deal with the world's biggest worldwide TV and broadband company, Liberty Global.

He said the group's "strategic transformation is nearing completion", but said Vodafone was "starting to write a new chapter".

His replacement, Read, became Vodafone's CFO in April 2014, having previously worked as the group's chief executive for the Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific region.

Analysts said the timing of the departure should come as no surprise and that investors should be reassured by Read's appointment due to his experience running its British operations and the emerging market assets.

"At the date of the Group's Annual General Meeting on 27 July 2018, Deputy CFO Margherita Della Valle will succeed Nick Read as Group Chief Financial Officer and will join the Board, and Nick Read will become Group Chief Executive-Designate", Vodafone said. He's now the chief financial officer so is well known in City and investment circles.

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