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Mobile & Wireless

Airtel prepares mgt for India, Africa integration - report

Thursday 10 January 2013 | 15:11 CET | News

Indian mobile operator Bharti Airtel has lost three top executives ahead of a restructuring expected to combine the company's India and Africa operations in a single entity, reports The Economic Times. The latest to depart is the head of network operations for India and South Asia, Shankar Halder, who is leaving to start his own technology consulting firm, a company executive aware of the development said. In late December 2012, the company's supply chain head S Asokan, who was a member of the Airtel management board, put in his papers, two other company executives who declined to be named confirmed.

Airtel has hired Moti Gyamlani, GE Energy's vice-president for global supply chain, for a similar role at the operator and to oversee the logistics involved in running the company's Indian and African operations. He is based at Airtel Centre, Gurgaon and will report to Sunil Mittal, an Airtel spokesperson said. Bharti Airtel, in an internal mail to top executives, said that it was consolidating the supply chain management across both continents under Gyamlani as part of its 'One-Airtel' strategy to create global synergies. 

In December, Airtel's director for IT (India and South Asia), Amrita Gangotra, quit to join Vodafone's global team in London. Gangotra had been responsible for planning, implementation and strategy for all its IT initiatives across mobile, fixed, broadband and DTH. The spokesperson confirmed that all three top executives had left the company.

The newspaper earlier reported that Manoj Kohli, the joint MD of Airtel and CEO of its African operations, could be the frontrunner to head the combined telecommunication business of the company across both continents. Under the new structure, which will be taken up by the company's board soon, the CEOs of India and Africa will report to the global CEO. Srikanth Balachander, chief financial officer, has been overseeing this role for both the India and Africa businesses. 

The company also elevated Bharat Bambawale to the role of global brand director, and IT head Jai Menon now heads global innovation. These executives currently report to Mittal, but work with Kohli and Kapoor. 

Airtel did not respond to specific queries on the proposed restructuring. It is learnt that the operator’s board will examine the possibility of rolling out the new structure at its meeting in February.


Categories: Mobile & Wireless
Companies: Bharti Airtel
Countries: Africa / India
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