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Nick Read to head Vodafone

16 May 2018

"It is a hard decision to step down as CEO from a company where you have been for 10 years", Colao said.

For Colao, what life after Vodafone will look like hasn't been decided, he said.

By creating India's largest telecoms operator, Vodafone is seeking to reverse its troubled fortunes in the country, where the company's revenue slumped 18.7 percent during its last financial year.

Just a week after striking a $21.8bn deal to buy Liberty Global's cable TV and broadband networks in Germany and Eastern Europe, Vodafone today announced that its chief executive Vittorio Colao will step down in October after 10 years.

Initially employed as a finance director in the United Kingdom, Read progressed through its national management structure, becoming Chief Operating Officer and then Chief Executive.

The decline was due to the positive translation impact of closing foreign exchange rates on the debt balance of 1.2 billion euro and proceeds of Rs 3,850 crore from the sale of Vodafone India's standalone towers to American Tower Corporation.

"He has sorted out Vodafone's portfolio of assets through astute disposals and acquisitions, and has returned considerable amounts to shareholders", the spokesperson said.

Vodafone has challenged the tax notice under the Netherlands-India Bilateral Investment Treaty and the matter is now arbitration.

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The complainant alleged that they had been attacked a couple of times earlier also and had been living in fear in the locality. Talking about the hockey sticks in their hands, the residents claimed that they had the sticks because of dogs menace.

Vodafone Group Plc also says that it already has its CFO replacement ready to replace Read as he prepares to take over as its CEO.

By the time Colao moves steps down from his position, Vodafone India would have reduced its exposure in India with merger into a joint venture with Aditya Birla Group.

"Vittoria Colao has certainly chosen a good time to bow out, having finally consummated a significant and strategically beneficial deal with Liberty Global, as well as reporting a relatively decent year to March 2018", said Carse.

Read has been CFO since April 2014 and was previously CEO for the Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific region.

"Ultimately Colao's successor, current chief financial officer Nick Read, could also be running to stand still".

Deputy chief financial officer will succeed Read at the annual general meeting in July.

Colao's decade as CEO at Vodafone has been mostly characterised by sales to clean up a sprawling global network of businesses and stakes in telecoms companies that he inherited from his predecessor Arun Sarin in July 2008. He's now the chief financial officer so is well known in City and investment circles.

Nick Read to head Vodafone