Vodafone commercial and strategy head to step down

Vodafone HQ sign

UK operator Vodafone has announced its Group Chief Commercial Operations and Strategy Officer, Paolo Bertoluzzo, is going to step down after 17 years with the company to take a CEO role in Italy.

Bertoluzzo is widely viewed as Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao’s second in command, apparently combining the traditional COO and CSO roles. His last day will be 8 July 2016, after which he will become Group CEO of payment and general financial services company ICBPI (Istituto Centrale delle Banche Popolari Italiane).

The first role taken by Bertoluzzo at Vodafone was Strategy and Business Development Director of Vodafone Italy, under Colao. His promotion to CEO of Vodafone Italy coincided with that of Colao to Group CEO and he eventually added an executive committee role as CEO of Southern Europe. Bertoluzzo was promoted to his current role in October 2013.

“Paolo has been an outstanding colleague who has made an immense contribution during his time in Italy and on our executive committee,” said Colao. “I would like to thank him for his dedication, friendship and wise advice. I wish him every success in his new role, which I know he will undertake with the devotion and commitment that drove so many valuable and effective initiatives during his 17 years with Vodafone.”

There was no news about Bertoluzzo’s successor, with Vodafone merely committing to make an announcement ‘in due course’. The smart money is probably on one of the current country CEOs. Aldo Bisio, Italy CEO, only joined Vodafone at the start of 2014, while UK boss Jeroen Hoencamp has been with the company since 1998. If Vodafone wants to focus on expansion beyond Europe there’s Serpil Timuray, who is currently head of its Middle East, Africa and APAC regions.

The move comes as Vodafone announced its first year of annual revenue growth last week, combined with the conclusion of its Project Spring investment programme. So the group is at a critical commercial and strategic juncture and the successor will have their work cut out for them.


  1. Scott Bicheno Scott Bicheno 25/05/2016 @ 9:21 am

    Oops, thanks, corrected

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