New Vodafone CEO Has Tough Calls Ahead

Verizon partnership, growth will be at the top of Colao's to-do list
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted May 28, 2008 9:20 AM CDT
Vodaphone Group on Tuesday said chief executive Arun Sarin would step down at the end of July.   (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)
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(Newser) – A slowing global economy and continued investor unease over Vodafone’s 45% stake in Verizon Wireless will likely provide a turbulent welcome for new CEO Vittorio Colao when he takes the reins of the wireless provider in July, the Wall Street Journal reports. Colao will succeed Arun Sarin, who's set to leave in July—earlier than previously expected.

While some changes are expected, Colao, whom Sarin has groomed for the CEO role, is expected to continue pushing Vodafone’s growth in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East while working to grow add-on products—like data—in Europe’s mature marketplace. What might change is its joint venture with Verizon—the two have discussed a Verizon Wireless buyout for months.