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Vodafone nabs Ericsson’s network head to replace outgoing CTO

Vodafone Steve Pusey

Vodafone’s chief technology officer, Steve Pusey, has announced his intention to retire at the end of July this year. The telco has moved to appoint Ericsson’s executive vice president and the head of its networks business, Johan Wibergh, to replace Pusey in the role of CTO.

Pusey (pictured above) joined Vodafone in 2006, and previously headed up Nortel’s EMEA business after joining the vendor from British Telecom in 1982. Most recently, Pusey has featured in a Vodafone advertisement campaign, endorsing the move towards 4G and praising the capabilities of high speed mobile broadband. He was also instrumental in Vodafone’s fixed network expansion in multiple global territories, including the acquisition of fixed-line businesses in Germany, New Zealand, Spain and the UK, as well as the ongoing development of fibre networks in Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

Pusey has also been the creator and public face of Vodafone’s ongoing network investment programme, Project Spring, which is intended to refresh and upgrade European networks to cater for increasing mobile bandwidth demands. £19 billion has been invested into the project to date, and Pusey features in the advertisement image above.

Pusey will be stepping down from his role as of the 31st July 2015. Meanwhile, taking over as CTO, Johan Wibergh will be joining Vodafone in May, allowing sufficient time for handover. The move could be seen as quite the scalp for Vodafone, with Wibergh overseeing the growth of Ericsson’s mobile equipment global market share to 35%, according to Vodafone, and the telco will hope to reap the benefit of Wibergh’s extensive experience in the global network infrastructure industry.

Speaking on the ongoing board-level changes, Vodafone Group Chief Executive Vittorio Colao said: “Steve has been an outstanding colleague who has made an immense contribution to Vodafone, and I would like to thank him for his wisdom, focus and commitment. He will leave as his legacy a business strongly placed for success as a result of his efforts, including most recently his leadership of Project Spring which is well on track and already delivering significant benefits for our customers. I would also like to welcome Johan to Vodafone, his background and skills are strongly complementary as we continue our transition to a global data company and I look forward to working with him closely.”


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