Verizon hires ousted Ericsson CEO to head new technology group

As AT&T and Vodafone (see separate item) well know, deploying a brand new network architecture is not just about technology but about process and structure. Verizon is taking its own stab at accelerating its new deployments and ensuring these are aligned to customer needs, creating a new network and technology group headed up by former Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg.

The division will focus on “delivering seamless network experiences for customers” across different connections including WiFi, fiber, 4G, 5G and future technologies. It will be one of three new units dedicated to oerpations and deployments in key areas of Verizon’s business strategy.

Vestberg will report directly to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam and will focus mainly on fiber optic networks and on the upcoming 5G fixed wireless launches. Although the Swede was ousted from Ericsson after a string of poor results, he certainly has deep understanding of operator requirements and advanced deployment processes – in its announcement, Verizon noted that Ericsson provides 35% of the world’s 2G, 3G and 4G network infrastructures.

Meanwhile, Marni Walden, the current president of product innovation and new businesses, will head a new media and telematics division, while John Stratton, the president of operations, will lead a customer and product operations unit.

“This new structure is designed to accelerate our progress toward delivering the promise of the digital world to customers,” McAdam said. “It will give us greater organizational ability to continue to lead the market with our wireless and fiber services, scale and expand our media and telematics businesses, and maintain the leadership in network reliability and new technology that is a Verizon trademark.”