Ericsson's strategy chief and M&A guru Doug Gilstrap to leave company

Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) said Doug Gilstrap, the vendor's global head of strategy, will resign from his role as of Aug. 1. Gilstrap, one of CEO Hans Vestberg's top lieutenants, has been with the company since August 2009.

Doug Gilstrap ericsson

Gilstrap

Ericsson did not immediately name a replacement. The company said that the process to find a new head of strategy will start immediately.

Gilstrap has a key player in developing Ericsson's global business strategy during the past five years, and the company said he was "instrumental to the company's business development and mergers and acquisitions activities."

Some of Ericsson's major purchases in the past few years have been focused on giving the company access to elements of networking expertise or growth markets it did not have in-house. In 2011 Ericsson bought OSS/BSS vendor Telcordia for $1.15 billion; in 2012 Ericsson purchased Wi-Fi networking gear specialist BelAir Networks; and in 2013 Ericsson nabbed Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Mediaroom IPTV business.

Gilstrap also played a key role in dissolving the ST-Ericsson joint venture between Ericsson and STMicroelectronics and integrating the venture's thin modems business into Ericsson. Since 2013 he has also served as chairman of the modems business unit.

Vestberg heaped praise on Gilstrap. "Douglas has been instrumental in shaping Ericsson's strategy with his broad industry knowledge, business development and transactional skills during the five years that he has been with the company," Vestberg said in a statement. "He has played a leading role in all M&A and key commercial activities during these years, strengthening Ericsson's position across all business segments."

"I am very proud of the work that we have done at Ericsson and how the company has strengthened its position in this transforming and dynamic market," Gilstrap said.

For more:
- see this release
- see this Bloomberg article

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