MTN has confirmed what many have long suspected. The cellular group’s president and CEO, Phuthuma Nhleko, is to step down. Nhleko will leave MTN by March 2011, MTN says.
Nhleko will not renew his “long-term contract of employment, which ends on 30 June 2010”, the group says in a statement. “Consequently, he will stand down as group president and CEO. Nhleko has, however, agreed with the board to continue in his current role up to March 2011.”
Until then, he has agreed to focus on “achieving certain key objectives”. This includes “facilitating a seamless transition once his successor has been appointed”.
“On behalf of the board, management and staff, I would like to thank Phuthuma for his outstanding vision and leadership over the past eight years. Under his tenure, MTN has grown into a leading emerging-market success story and expanded to become the number one provider of mobile telecommunications services across Africa and the Middle East,” says MTN chairman Cyril Ramaphosa.
“Given Phuthuma’s knowledge and insights into MTN we have mutually agreed to explore other options for an ongoing association between Phuthuma and the group post his service as President and CEO.”
Nhleko says his decision comes after “very careful consideration”.
“I feel it is the right time to secure the next generation of leadership for the group — and the right time for me personally to start thinking about the next phase of my career,” he says. “Over the coming months, I will continue to focus my full attention on delivering on the group’s strategic priorities and on ensuring a thorough handover to my successor.” — Staff reporter, TechCentral