T-Mobile USA named former Clearwire (NASDAQ:CLWR) executive Mike Sievert as its new CMO, placing him in charge of the carrier's brand as it works toward a merger with MetroPCS (NYSE:PCS) and the launch of LTE next year.
T-Mobile has been without a permanent CMO since Cole Brodman stepped down from a 17-year career at T-Mobile in May. T-Mobile said that Andrew Sherrard, who has been serving as acting CMO since Brodman left, will return to his position as senior vice president of marketing for T-Mobile's contract business.
"Mike is a unique creative genius, and his track record as a disruptive force in tech and telecom couldn't be better suited to our plans to redefine wireless as America's un-carrier," T-Mobile CEO John Legere said in a statement. "This is a critical and incredibly exciting time for T-Mobile as we race forward with our network modernization and LTE launch in 2013, ramp up investments in re-launching our brand, and begin to shake up the U.S. wireless market."
Sievert, who had been Clearwire's chief commercial officer, left the company in the spring of 2011 as part of an executive shakeup that also saw the resignation of Bill Morrow as CEO and Kevin Hart, Clearwire's former CIO. Sievert most recently served as CEO of Discovery Bay Games, a Seattle-based mobile gaming company, but also had stints at Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and the former AT&T Wireless.
Sievert is credited with growing Clearwire's revenue and customer base as it expanded its mobile WiMAX network to around 130 million POPs. However, there were also some clear stumbles under his tenure. In May 2011, for example, Clearwire dropped its Rover prepaid WiMAX brand a little more than eight months after it unveiled the youth-oriented offering. Sievert had been a major proponent of Rover. A few months later, in October 2011, Clearwire ditched its retail postpaid WiMAX offering, opting instead to stick with prepaid service.
The appointment of Sievert comes at a critical time for T-Mobile's brand. The company earlier this year launched a more aggressive advertising campaign, with its spokeswoman Carly Foulkes trading her magenta dress for the black leather of a biker. T-Mobile is also working to emphasize its 4G speeds and expanded network coverage.
If T-Mobile is successful in merging with MetroPCS, Sievert would also have to manage the marketing message around the combination of the two companies.
- see this release
- see this AllThingsD article
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