Future Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg: Will He Continue McAdam Legacy?


The appointment of Hans Vestberg indicates that the key strategy of Verizon, the number one telecom operator in the US, will be in the building up of 5G, the next-generation of wireless network and not expanding into media content, Reuters reported. On Friday, Verizon announced that on August 1, Lowell McAdam will be stepping down from his post of Chief Executive Officer.

Lowell McAdam will retire as Verizon's CEO effective August 1, when Vestberg takes the reins. Stratton has stepped down from his role at Verizon effective immediately, and will support a transition as a strategic advisor reporting to McAdam before leaving the company by the end of 2018.

Present responsibilities of Hans Vestberg, 52, include developing the strong architecture for Verizon's fiber-centric networks, including 4G LTE network, 5G deployment in the USA, residential fiber network, and a global internet backbone and undersea cable network with massive investment. It was one of the company's ways of touting its upcoming 5G broadband network, which has promised faster data speeds to consumers and businesses.

He added, "As I think about the power of 5G, I am convinced that this is a significant and pivotal time for Verizon and our entire industry - and now is the time to bring Verizon into its next chapter".

Verizon has typically relied on a strong wireless network to grow its customer base, but that strategy has faltered recently as competitors, such as T-Mobile, have improved their service and reputation with customers, said BTIG analyst Walt Piecyk. It also closed the largest technology deal of all time in 2014, buying Vodafone's 45% stake in Verizon Wireless for $130 billion.

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Vestberg said, "I am humbled to be appointed CEO of Verizon at such an exciting and dynamic time for our company and industry".

Verizon's stock has grown about 35% in McAdam's tenure according to the Wall Street Journal, better that AT&T.

Vestberg previously ran telecom company Ericsson AB, before an ouster in 2016. Companies are bulking up in an attempt to grab as many consumers as they can. Hans Vestberg, who has left as the CEO of Ericsson during a crisis period, joined Verizon in April 2017. "Hans is an energizing force" that will make Verizon a leader in "the emergence of technologies that blend the physical and the digital to create historic breakthroughs in connectivity and mobility".

Meanwhile, Current CEO McAdam has expressed confidence in his successor.