Arun Sarin To Step Down As Vodafone CEO; Colao To Be Replacement: Reports

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Arun Sarin, who defined Vodafone (NYSE: VOD) as the big global telecom conglomerate in his five years as CEO, is going to step down in July and will be replaced by Vittorio Colao, who is presently Sarin’s number two and has responsibility for the company’s European operations, reports Telegraph. The exact timing of Sarin’s departure, along with record headline full-year profits of about $25.8 billion (£13 billion) will be announced on Tuesday, the story said.
The timing of his departure comes as a surprise, if only because he was almost ousted two years ago in a board battle, but has since managed to steady the ship, with his focus on building Vodafone’s presence in emerging markets, including India. Sarin (pictured here at Vodafone’s earnings gathering for investors this morning) is expected to move into private equity world.
Times UK: As well as success in emerging markets, Sarin has also seen revenues rise thanks to data. Last year revenues from this area—the downloading of music clips, emailing and so on—surged nearly 50 per cent in the first half to $1.9 billion (£1 billion). Data revenues now account for 7.3 percent of the group’s total Western European revenues.
Update: In Vodafone’s Tuesday-morning earnings meeting, Sarin said: “I’ve done what I came here to do. The time is right and the time is now.” He said he looked forward to seeing the gathered analysts again “in the next couple of years” as his tenure comes to an end, suggesting it may be a slow step-down.

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