Tele2 CEO to take on top GSMA role

The GSM Association (GSMA) said Tele2 Group CEO Mats Granryd will be its new director general with effect from January 2016, replacing Anne Bouverot who stepped down from the position on July 31.

Granryd's appointment to the top position at the global mobile industry body also creates a vacancy at Sweden-based Tele2, which announced separately that its current CFO Allison Kirkby is to take on the position of CEO with effect from Sept. 1. Tele2 added that Granryd would stay with the company until the end of December 2015, "facilitating an effective transition process."

The GSMA's move brings to an end the uncertainty surrounding the successor to Bouverot after the association failed to nominate a new director general following her departure at the end of July. Alex Sinclair, CTO of the GSMA, was appointed as acting director general to lead the group in the interim period.

Granryd brings with him a wealth of experience in the mobile sector. Prior to taking on the role of CEO and president of Tele2 in 2010, he spent 15 years in various roles at Sweden-based equipment manufacturer Ericsson. Now, he is clearly looking forward to playing a broader role in the mobile industry.

"We have made tremendous progress in our industry's relatively short lifetime, but we have significant opportunities ahead of us as we look to not only connect the unconnected, but also deliver a vast range of new technologies, products and services that will improve our lives and allow us to engage more effectively with our environments," Granryd said.

Recent examples of the GSMA's work include a project that aims to accelerate the launch of mobile Internet of Things (IoT) technology. Last week, leading mobile operators and vendors backed the Mobile IoT Initiative, which is focused on the use of Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) technology in licensed spectrum.

Meanwhile Tele2 chairman Mike Parton said Granryd had informed the board of his wish to take up the GSMA role, and noted that Allison Kirkby had already been identified as the next CEO.

"Allison has forged a successful career within the FMCG, media, retail and telecom industries and she has proven at Tele2 that she can drive and manage operational excellence throughout the organisation. Her strong operational experience makes her extremely well suited to lead Tele2, as it continues to focus on profitable growth across its core markets," Parton commented.

For more:
- see this GSMA release
- see this Tele2 release

Related articles:
GSMA mobile IoT project backed by major EU operators, infrastructure companies
GSMA appoints CTO as interim head as it continues search for Bouverot's successor
GSMA nears agreement with Apple, Samsung et al on eSIM standard
Closing the mobile gender gap: what the GSMA, Orange, Ericsson and others are doing to empower women
GSMA DG says EC must back plans for joint mobile and broadcast usage of UHF frequencies

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