Bharti Airtel rings in top level changes for Africa biz unit
Country’s largest telecom operator Bharti Airtel Ltd on Tuesday said it has elevated Airtel Africa MD and CEO Christian Defaria to the position of Executive Chairman of Airtel Africa in order to restructure its loss-making African telecom business.
In a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange, the company said, “Airtel announces senior level organizational changes and new organization design for Africa operations.”
The company had planned to restructure its African business by grouping operations in 15 countries under eight clusters along with change in management structure.
Also, the operator appointed its director of Customer Experience (India and South Asia), Raghunath Mandava, as Chief Operating Officer of Airtel Africa.
Commenting on the development, Bharti Airtel, Chairman, Sunil Bharti Mittal said, “We believe we have a strong platform to accelerate our journey towards profitability and market leadership and the new cluster-based organisation design will provide an enabling environment to the teams.”
“Christian has done an excellent job by streamlining the operations, strengthening the leadership teams across Africa while enhancing the image of Airtel brand across Africa,” he added.
In his new role, he will continue to support the vision of Airtel Africa and lead all matters relating to legal, regulatory affairs, shareholders as well as mergers and acquisitions.
Airtel moved its director of Customer Experience, India and South Asia Raghunath Mandava as Chief Operating Officer, Airtel Africa. Mandava, who has been with Airtel since 2003, will relocate to Nairobi and will be fully responsible for the commercial operations.
"The appointment of Raghu will help leverage the platform and sharpen our market focus and strengthen the innovation pipeline. We remain fully committed to Africa and will continue to invest in the growth of our operations," Mittal said.
As per the new cluster-based organisation design, operations in 15 African countries will now be classified into eight clusters with all cluster heads reporting to Raghu, the company said.
Meanwhile, shares of the company closed at Rs 315.10 apiece, down 1.11 per cent, from previous close on BSE.