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Vodafone CEO Nick Read resigned after four years

Vodafone CEO Nick Read resigned after four years

December 7, 2022: -Nick Read will resign as head of Vodafone by the year-end and be replaced on internment order by his finance director, which brings an end to a four-year tenure marking a near halving of its share cost.

Read led the ex-mobile telecoms market leader in the pandemic and sold assets to raise its focus on Europe and Africa while spinning its tower’s infrastructure business into a separate unit.

Despite the changes, Vodafone’s shares have stayed in the doldrums. They are down over 40% since Read took more than in October 2018, trading at a similar level for two years.

Only last month, Vodafone is cutting its full-year outlook, citing soaring energy costs and deteriorating results in its big European markets of Germany and Spain.

“I agree with the board that is the right moment to hand more than to a recent leader who can form on Vodafone’s strengths and capture the significant opportunities ahead,” he stated.

Shares in the company increased by 1.6% in early trade.

The Read will be placed on an interim basis by Margherita Della Valle, tasked with accelerating “the execution of the strategy of the firm to improve operational performance delivering shareholder value”.

The company said the board had begun a process to find a new chief executive.

“The next question is, what solutions are available to the upcoming CEO? Vodafone is facing intractable headwinds. We think dividend policy treating as under review,” Jefferies analysts wrote.

Read has been a wellwisher for consolidation in Vodafone’s huge European markets, which include Britain, Spain, Italy and Portugal, but has struggled to change intention into action.

In February, it did not take an offer of over 11 billion euros for its Italian firm from Iliad and Apax Partners. In July, its rivals in Spain, Orange and MasMovil, agreed to a $19 billion merger.  

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