T-Mobile promotes Saad to CTO amid executive shuffle

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T-Mobile is shuffling executives as it prepares to take on the Sprint integration. (FierceWireless)

As part of the executive shuffle that has been going on at T-Mobile, the “un-carrier” named Abdul Saad to CTO, a position previously held by Neville Ray, who’s now president of Technology.

T-Mobile confirmed the move, first reported by GeekWire and tweeted by Ray last week. Saad previously served as SVP of Technology.

The company also disclosed in a Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing last week that long-time telecom industry executive and T-Mobile EVP of Corporate Services David Carey is leaving the company.

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Saad’s promotion and Carey’s departure are the latest in a string of executive changes as T-Mobile prepares to integrate Sprint. CEO John Legere announced last year that he will leave by the end of April, with COO Mike Sievert taking on his role.

CFO Braxton Carter also is leaving; his replacement has not been made public. The Wall Street Journal last year reported that analysts had speculated about Carter's departure back in September 2018, when T-Mobile said Sunit Patel, the former CFO at CenturyLink, would join the company to lead its expected integration with Sprint.  

RELATED: Sievert to take T-Mobile helm in 2020 when Legere steps down

The company has spent the past two years preparing for the merger, with top executives Legere, Sievert, Carter and Ray often not even acknowledging the alternatives if the deal were not allowed to go forward. Work to integrate Sprint’s 2.5 GHz spectrum and network was already underway to the extent it could be done before the $26 billion merger was officially sanctioned.

After being challenged in court by more than a dozen state attorneys general, the transaction received the green light from U.S. District Court Judge Victor Marrero earlier this month.

Another technical milestone was achieved last week when T-Mobile US parent Deutsche Telekom and Sprint parent company SoftBank struck new terms to reflect changes in Sprint’s valuation since the deal was consummated. The goal is to close the transaction by April 1.

Ray hasn’t said what his plans are post-merger, but he’s on more than one occasion said he wants to build a 5G network that trumps Verizon’s and AT&T’s. He was named president of Technology in November. It’s not known what role, if any, there will be for Sprint CTO John Saw in the new company.

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