Tele2 CEO says management reshuffle will deliver improved customer focus

Tele2 became the third operator in the past two weeks to announce a restructure of top-tier management, following similar moves by Orange and TeliaSonera.

Stockholm-headquartered Tele2 said its management reshuffle will better position it to realise the benefits of its Challenger Program, a project that aims to deliver productivity savings of around SEK1 billion (€106 million/$120 million) per year from 2018 onwards.

The planned changes will see Niklas Sonkin, Tele2's current EVP and market area director for Eurasia and acting CTIO, become EVP and COO of the operator. Sonkin's new role includes responsibility for all CTIO and shared operations for the group, while maintaining responsibility for Kazakhstan and Germany.

Lars Torstensson, who is currently EVP of communications and strategy, will become EVP of new growth and strategy, while Anders Olsson, presently Tele2's EVP and chief commercial officer, will become EVP of strategic projects.

One of Olsson's initial responsibilities will be to focus on the successful execution of the Challenger Program, Tele2 explained in a statement.

The operator also confirmed that Malin Holmberg has been appointed as EVP and market area director for Central Europe on a permanent basis.

All of the management appointments are due to take effect from Oct. 15, the operator stated.

Tele2 CEO Allison Kirkby said the management reshuffle was evaluated based on the goals of the Challenger Program. Based on that assessment, the operator concluded "that a leadership team reorganisation is necessary in order to increase our customer focus and to fully leverage group knowledge and scale efficiencies," she explained.

Rival TeliaSonera also cited a desire to more fully utilise its group capabilities when it announced a management reshuffle in late September that sees the departure of SVP Malin Frenning following a 20-year career with the operator.

TeliaSonera is making the changes as it combines its Commercial and Technology groups -- a move that president and CEO Johan Dennelind said would "bring our operations even closer to the customers, ensure faster time to market and delivery on our transformation agenda."

Orange followed suit in early October, announcing changes that will take effect from March 2016 and are designed to assist the operator in achieving the goals of its Essentials2020 strategic plan, which covers elements including the pending launch of a mobile banking service, and the integration of Jazztel in Spain.

For more:
- see Tele2's reorganisation announcement

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