Paolo Bertoluzzo, Group Chief Commercial Operations & Strategy Officer at Vodafone, is to leave the operator on 8 July 2016, and take on the Group Chief Executive (CEO) position at Italian banking services provider Istituto Centrale delle Banche Popolari (ICBPI). The move – which extends a recent (and perhaps uncompleted) refresh of the Group’s C-Suite – appears to have been instigated from Bertoluzzo’s side. It also seems to have been at least partially unexpected, with Vodafone stating in its filing on the news that it “will be announcing Paolo’s successor in due course”.

A prominent lieutenant of Group CEO Vittorio Colao, and leader of the wave of international executives that have come into Vodafone’s senior hierarchy in recent years, Bertoluzzo was a gainer in Vodafone’s reorganisation of 2013, securing leadership of an upgraded (but perhaps unwieldy) Group Commercial division, and with it central functions such as Brand, Customer Operations, Group Enterprise, Partner Markets, Terminals, and Unified Communications (Vodafonewatch, #116). Yet another element – “Strategy” – was subsequently added to his mandate.

Previous to the 2013 reshuffle, Bertoluzzo navigated an awkward but brief period as CEO of the Southern Europe Region, which was created in an apparent temporary Club Med-quarantining exercise – having been promoted from the Vodafone Italy (VfIt) CEO slot, and given a seat on the Group’s Executive Committee (ExCo), during 2012 (Vodafonewatch, #102). He was appointed VfIt CEO in 2008, having joined the OpCo in 1999, as Strategy & Business Development Director.

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Transition questions

With the prospect of further senior leadership changes coming down the line, it will be interesting to see how the “Strategy” brief – and other functions, such as the Nick Jeffery-led Group Enterprise division, and the Customer Operations department suffering from the embarrassment of Vodafone UK’s (VfUK) high-profile billing problems, as well as other recent knockbacks and false starts – are reapportioned by Vodafone when it appoints Bertoluzzo’s replacement.

As well as its coincidence with the muddle at VfUK, it is noticeable that Bertoluzzo’s departure comes with Vodafone’s future “Strategy” having been firmly corralled within the framework of Chief Financial Officer Nick Read and his Fit for Growth programme – accentuating the latter’s rise in influence since his appointment in 2014, at others’ expense. With newer appointees now populating many of the most high-profile ExCo seats (see table), and Read having thoroughly reordered his own ranks of finance executives at Group and OpCo level (Vodafonewatch, #143 and passim), it is difficult to see someone better positioned internally for eventual succession of Colao, should the Group’s Board of Directors indeed look inside its walls for its next CEO.

Warm regards

Vodafone’s statement exuded a level of warmth not always displayed for departing executives, paying tribute to Bertoluzzo’s “central role in the definition of the Group’s strategy and the design and direction of Vodafone’s group-wide commercial plans” since his takeover of the Group Commercial brief.

“ Paolo has been an outstanding colleague who has made an immense contribution during his time in Italy and on our Executive Committee. I would like to thank him for his dedication, friendship, and wise advice. I wish him every success in his new role, which I know he will undertake with the devotion and commitment that drove so many valuable and effective initiatives during his 17 years with Vodafone. ” – Colao.

Image: © Vodafone

Table of Contents

Management update
6 Vodafone seeks to turn page as growth regained
7 Headlines — momentum creeping back
8 Twin-track growth hailed as key
8 VZW windfall dwindling
9 Germany and Italy back in positive territory
11 Outlook — through the worst, but challenges still ahead
11 Vodafone sticks to guns on ecosystem squeeze
12 Back on track, but Colao still watchful
14 Spending: Wibergh secures post-Spring capex uplift
15 Strategy 2020 framework laid out
M&A
18 Skodafone finally materialises… but in New Zealand
18 If content is king, then VfNZ now rules multi-play
19 Vodafone self-funds refit of VfNZ; SKY paying with 51% equity and Vodafone loan
20 All-important synergies
21 VfNZ: pathfinder or buccaneer?
22 Struggler Outsourcery in play, Vodafone linked
23 Our man inside
25 VfV cashes in on Expertmaker and Perfecto
25 Clear-out at VfV, Vodafone’s perennial spare part
People
27 Strategy & Commercial boss Bertoluzzo returns to Italy
28 Transition questions
28 Warm regards
Partnerships
30 Fon eyes new markets for Vodafone tie-up
30 Emerging markets in focus
30 Merchant solution launched
31 Fon positions as telecoms services vendor
Q4 FY15-16
34 German and Italian revival boosts Europe recovery
35 Sales, earnings dials finally point in right direction
35 Pre-crisis giants coming back into form, but home market problems continue
Germany
37 Heat rises in TDE spat as EC confirms vectoring review
38 More cons than pros
40 Must wait and see
Portugal
42 VfP snaps up Optimus fibre assets
42 Playing ball with NOS
Romania
43 Vodafone and Huawei test new E-band microwave tech
43 Broader deployment planned
43 Microwave to retain role in 5G rollout — Wibergh
UK
44 EU finally blocks O2-Three deal
45 Three key factors behind EC objections
46 CKH remedies fail to impress Vestager – as expected
47 CKH disappointed, while Telefónica remains nonchalant
47 EC block unlikely to be end of activity in the UK market and beyond
48 Mitie to gain £70m from Cornerstone tie-up
Q4 FY15-16
51 Transitioning AMAP leaders getting back on their game
52 Profit again puts European operations in shade
52 Big players regain edge
Egypt
54 MasterCard takes on Vodafone Cash enabler role
India
55 Amdocs widens work with VfIn on billing
56 Vodafone New Zealand added to Amdocs’ growing OpCo footprint
58 New Indus CEO on lookout for takeovers
58 Site operators begin to meld
59 VfIn seeks to scupper BSNL OTT app
Kenya — Safaricom
59 Safaricom teams with Kenya Power on fibre
Vodacom — South Africa
60 Joosub again bemoans 4G spectrum delay in SA
60 Toe-dipping into unlicensed spectrum…
61 … and finger-drumming on licensed spectrum
62 Vodacom drops M-PESA in South Africa
62 M-PESA expansion

Index

A

Acacia Research Corp. 38
Aditya Birla Group
Idea Cellular 58
AdMaxim 26
Affirmed Networks 26
Afilias Ltd
mTLD Top Level Domain Ltd. (dotMobi) 26
Africa 19, 29, 30, 31, 50, 51, 61, 62
Egypt 10, 14, 51, 52, 54, 59
– Ghana 10, 62
– Kenya 59, 62
Government 61
– – Kenya Power & Lighting Company Ltd. 59
South Africa 9, 10, 14, 29, 30, 51, 52, 53, 54, 59, 60, 61, 62
Competition Commission 44
– – Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) 60, 61
– – Public Investment Corp. Ltd (PIC) 61
Tanzania 29, 62
Agora Mobile 26
Altice Group
Cabovisao SA 42
Amdocs 55, 56
American Tower Corp. 58
Americas
Canada 26
– USA 26, 29, 60
Apax Partners 42
Apigee Corp. 26
Argyle Data 26
Arqiva 48
Asia-Pacific 29, 47
Australia 18, 20, 23, 30
– Fiji
Commerce Commission 56, 58
Hong Kong 47
– India 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 29, 30, 51, 52, 53, 55, 58, 59
Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) 29, 59
– – Department of Telecommunications (DoT) 59
– – Licence Circles
Delhi 58
– – – Mumbai 58
Telecom Commission 55
– – Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) 59
New Zealand 10, 18, 56, 58, 64
Commerce Commission (New Zealand) 56, 58
ASSA ABLOY AB
HID Global 39
AT&T 55
Aviva plc 31
Axiata Group Bhd (TM International)
India (Idea Cellular, see also Aditya Birla) 58

B

Beintoo 26
Bell Gully 19
Bertelsmann Group 29
Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) 59
Bharti Group 29, 30, 58
Airtel 29, 30, 58
Bharti Infratel 58
– – Vittal, Gopal 29
Bharti Enterprises 58
– Indus Towers 58
BMW Group 23
DriveNow (see also Sixt Group) 23
Brilliant Telecommunications Inc. 26
BT Group 12, 22, 29, 30, 31, 36, 44, 47
EE 29, 44, 45, 47

C

Caringo Inc. 26
CellEra Inc. 26
Christian Action Research and Education (CARE) 6, 16
Cisco Systems 23
Citibank 29
Citigroup 19
Cognia 26

D

Datatec Group 29
Deutsche Bank 19
Deutsche Telekom 31, 38, 40, 60
Europe
Hungary (see Magyar Telekom) 30
– – UK (EE) 29, 44, 45, 47
Germany 12, 30, 35, 37, 38, 40
– Investments
Magyar Telekom (see separate) 30
– – OTE (see separate) 30
USA 60
Device Insight 26
Dixons Carphone 47
Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG 23

E

eBay 25
Expertmaker 25, 26
– PayPal 45
Econet Wireless Group 61
Electricity Supply Board (Ireland) 59
Embee Mobile 26
EMC 31
Enel SpA 11, 59
Ericsson 55, 58
Ernst & Young 23
Essar Group
Essar Communications
Econet Wireless (see separate) 61
Etisalat 29
Europe 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 18, 21, 23, 27, 30, 33, 34, 35, 36, 43, 45, 52, 54
Albania 27, 62
– Cyprus 48
– Czech Republic 27, 36
– France 42
– Germany 9, 10, 12, 14, 26, 29, 30, 34, 35, 37, 38, 40, 45
Bundesnetzagentur für Elektrizität, Gas, Telekommunikation, Post und Eisenbahnen (BNetzA, RegTP, FNA, or German Federal Network Agency) 37, 38
– – Länder
Bavaria (Munich) 38
– – – North Rhine-Westphalia (Düsseldorf) 38
Greece 10, 14, 27, 30, 34
– Hungary 27, 30, 39, 45
– Ireland 10, 26, 34, 47, 59
– Italy 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 16, 23, 27, 28, 29, 31, 34, 36, 39, 40, 45, 47, 59
– Malta 27
– Netherlands 10, 11, 14, 21, 23, 29, 30, 34, 45, 56
– Portugal 10, 14, 34, 42
– Romania 10, 27, 34, 43
– Spain 9, 10, 11, 14, 20, 34, 35, 45, 47
– Sweden 25, 26, 29, 39
– Switzerland 36
– Turkey 10, 11, 14, 51, 52, 53, 61
– United Kingdom (UK) 6, 9, 10, 14, 16, 22, 26, 30, 31, 34, 36, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48
European Space Agency 43
European Union 12, 37, 44
European Commission 37, 38, 39, 40, 44, 45, 46, 47
– European Parliament 37
Evolution Robotics Inc. 26

F

Facebook
WhatsApp 59
FarCare 26
Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) 61
Ferrari 6
Finsphere Corp. 26
Flybits 26

G

G8 Communications 23
GameGround 26
General Electric 29
Goldman Sachs 29
Google 25
JIBE 25, 26
GSM Association (GSMA)
Mobile World Congress 45, 60

H

Headwater Partners 26
High Tech Computer Corp. (HTC) 38
HipLink Software (formerly Semotus Solutions)
Clickmarks 26
Huawei Technologies 22, 39, 43, 60
Humin 26
Hutchison Whampoa 44
Vodafone Hutchison Australia Pty Ltd (VHA, (see Vodafone) 21, 29, 54, 56

I

IBM 55
Indus Towers 58
INETCO Systems 26
Informa Telecoms & Media
Ovum 20
InfraCo Management Services 61
ItsOn 26

J

Jamii Telecommunications Ltd (JTL) 59
Juniper Networks
Brilliant Telecommunications 26

K

Kenya Electricity Transmission Co. 59
KPMG International 29
KPN 30

L

Liberty Global Inc. 21, 55
Virgin Media 44, 46, 47, 55
Lloyds Banking Group plc 31
London Stock Exchange 7

M

Magyar Telekom (see DT) 30
MasterCard 54
Microsoft 23
Skype 23
Middle East 31, 53
Egypt 10, 14, 51, 52, 54, 59
– Israel 26
– Qatar 29, 61
– United Arab Emirates 29
mimik technology 26
MobileIron 25, 26

N

Naratte 26
Neotel (Pty) Ltd (SNO Telecommunications, see also Reliance) 60, 61
Netflix Inc. 18
Nexperience Ltd 26
Nokia 31, 55
Nuance Communications
SnapIn Software 26

O

OBS Medical 26
Ooredoo 53
Oracle
Sun Microsystems
SavaJe Technologies 26
Orange
Orange 22
OTE (see DT) 30
Outsourcery 22, 23

P

Perfecto Mobile 25, 26
Permira
Genesys Telecomms. Labs 54
Pontis 26
Portugal Telecom 42
Procter & Gamble Co. 29

Q

Qatar Foundation Consortium 29
Qualcomm 60
Qualia Media 26
Quixey 26

R

Red Hat 31
Redknee 55
Reliance-Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group
Reliance Communications (RCom) 58

S

Safaricom 59
Executives
Collymore, Bob 59
Ex-executives
Joseph, Michael 62
M-PESA 62
Sainsbury, J 47
SEACOM 61
Siemens 29
Singapore Telecom
Amobee Media Systems 26
Sixt Group 23
DriveNow (see also BMW Group) 23
Skorpios Technologies 26
Sky Network Television 18
Sonaecom
Optimus 42
Swisscom
Fastweb 12, 36

T

TalkTalk Telecom Group plc 47
Taqua 26
Tata Group 29, 58, 61
Tata Communications 29, 61
Neotel (see separate) 60, 61
Tata Teleservices 58
Technology
2G 15, 61
– 3G 15, 16, 52, 58
– 4G 15, 16, 39, 43, 46, 58, 60, 61
LTE 39, 56, 60, 61
5G 15, 16, 43, 45, 61
– BSS 56
– DSL 39
– Fibre 14, 16, 20, 21, 37, 38, 42, 43, 56, 59
– FTTH 16, 42
– M2M 26, 56
– NaaS 22
– OSS 56
– SIM 39, 40
– Smartphone 26, 39, 60
– Spectrum 12, 29, 47, 52, 55, 60, 61
700 MHz 52
– – 800 MHz 60, 61
– – 1800 MHz 60
– – 2600 MHz 60, 61
VDSL2 38, 40
– W-LAN 30, 39, 60, 61
Tele2 29
Telecom Egypt 54
Telecom Italia 12
Telecom New Zealand 18
Telefónica Group 22, 44, 47, 48
Europe 44, 45, 46, 47
Ireland 47
– – Tesco Mobile 46
– – UK 44, 47
TeleManagement Forum 22
Telkom South Africa 29
Telstra 30
Tesco 46
Tesco Mobile 46
Top Optimized Technologies 26
Twenty-First Century Fox 18

V

Vasona Networks 26
Verizon Communications 8, 23, 60
Verizon Wireless 8, 23, 60
Viom Networks 58
Visa
PlaySpan 26
VisionOSS (VOSS) 26
Vodacom Group 9, 10, 14, 21, 29, 51, 53, 54, 60, 61, 62
Ex-executives
Dittrich, Ivan 29
Group 9, 10, 14, 29, 51, 53, 60, 61, 62
– South Africa 9, 10, 14, 29, 30, 51, 52, 53, 54, 59, 60, 61, 62
– Tanzania 29, 62
– Vodacom Business 29
Vodafone
Africa, Middle East, and Asia Pacific Region (AMAP) 7, 8, 9, 11, 14, 15, 16, 19, 27, 30, 36, 50, 51, 52, 53
Africa 19, 29, 30, 31, 50, 51, 62
– – Asia 29, 47
– – Australia 20, 23, 30
– – Egypt 10, 14, 29, 51, 52, 53, 54, 59
– – Ghana 10, 29, 62
– – India 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 29, 30, 51, 52, 55, 58, 59
Indus Towers 58
Kenya (see Safaricom) 59, 62
– – Middle East 31
– – Middle East and Africa 31
– – New Zealand 10, 11, 18, 19, 20, 21, 29, 39, 54, 56, 58, 64
– – Pacific 47
– – Qatar (see Vodafone and Qatar Foundation and Vodafone Qatar) 29, 53, 61
– – South Africa (see Vodacom) 9, 10, 14, 21, 29, 30, 51, 52, 53, 54, 59, 60, 61, 62
– – Turkey 10, 11, 14, 51, 52, 53, 61
Corporate
Vodafone Procurement Company S.a.r.l 15, 16
Europe Region 9, 27, 34, 35, 36, 52
Albania 27, 62
– – Cable & Wireless Worldwide 9, 56
– – Czech Republic 27, 36
– – Germany 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 26, 27, 29, 30, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 40, 45, 52, 54, 56
KDG Holding GmbH (Kabel Deutschland) 9, 11, 16, 35
Greece 10, 14, 27, 30, 34, 54, 56
– – Hungary 27, 30, 39, 45, 56
– – Ireland 10, 26, 34, 47, 54, 56, 59
Netshare Ireland 47
Italy 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 16, 23, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 34, 36, 39, 40, 45, 47, 56, 59
– – Malta 27, 29
– – Netherlands 10, 11, 14, 21, 23, 27, 29, 30, 34, 45, 56
– – Portugal 10, 14, 34, 42, 56
– – Romania 10, 27, 29, 34, 43, 56
– – Spain 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 20, 27, 30, 34, 39, 45, 56
Grupo Corporativo Ono (ONO) 9, 11, 16, 35
UK 6, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 22, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 34, 36, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 56
Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure Ltd 44, 46, 48
Executives
Ametsreiter, Hannes 27, 35
– – Bertoluzzo, Paolo 6, 16, 27, 29
– – Boddy, Tim 29
– – Coimbra, António 27
– – Colao, Vittorio 6, 9, 11, 12, 15, 16, 27, 28, 29, 34, 35, 36, 37, 39, 40, 44, 53
– – Finegold, Warren 25, 27
– – Gonzalez, Ignacio 43
– – Gray, Ian 29
– – Grover, Vikas 29
– – Haas, Ingrid 29
– – Hoencamp, Jeroen 27
– – Jeffery, Nick 27, 28
– – Joosub, Shameel 60, 62
– – Joseph, Michael 62
– – Kirk, Matthew 27
– – Liebenberg, Deon 29
– – Martin, Rosemary 27
– – Mundy, Jeni 23
– – Otty, John 19
– – Patel, Phil 19
– – Read, Nick 6, 16, 27, 28, 29, 35, 47, 52
– – Riviere, Peregrine 29
– – Schellekens, Ronald 27
– – Shuter, Rob 27, 29
– – Sood, Sunil 29
– – Stanners, Russell 19
– – Timuray, Serpil 19, 27
– – Wibergh, Johan 6, 16, 27, 35, 43
Ex-executives
Dowidar, Hatem 29
– – Hamill, Noel 29
– – Rupani, Hemant 29
– – Shah, Sanjeev 29
– – Thomas, Anthony 29
– – Whitehill, Kyle 29
Group 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 14, 19, 29, 37, 38, 43, 44, 55, 60, 62
Commercial
Invitation Digital 26
Headquarters 36
– – Marketing
Betavine 31
Partner Markets 27
Kenya (Safaricom) 59
– – – United Arab Emirates (du) 29
Vodafone Automotive 23
– – Vodafone Global Enterprise (VGE) 11, 29
– – Vodafone Procurement Company (VPC) 15, 16
– – Vodafone Ventures 25
Affirmed Networks (see separate) 26
– – – Argyle Data (see separate) 26
– – – biozoom Services (now liquidated) 26
– – – Caringo (see separate) 26
– – – CellEra (see separate) 26
– – – Cognia (see separate) 26
– – – Device Insight (see separate) 26
– – – Finsphere (see separate) 26
– – – Flybits (see separate) 26
– – – Headwater Partners (see separate) 26
– – – ItsOn (see separate) 26
– – – Key Revolution Ltd, The (now liquidated) 26
– – – mimik technology (see separate) 26
– – – Naratte (see separate) 26
– – – OBS Medical (see separate) 26
– – – Perfecto Mobile (see separate) 25, 26
– – – Pontis (see separate) 26
– – – Qualia Media (see separate) 26
– – – Quixey (see separate) 26
– – – Skorpios Technologies (see separate) 26
– – – Taqua (see separate) 26
– – – Top Optimized Technologies (see separate) 26
– – – United Hubbing Ltd (now liquidated) 26
– – – Vasona Networks (see separate) 26
– – – VOSS (see separate) 26
Investments & Associates
Americas (see Verizon Wireless) 8, 23, 60
Products
Advantage (Ireland) 11
– – Business 25
– – Europe 34, 35
– – Family 39
– – Liberty (Malta) 21, 55
– – live! 22
– – M2M 11
– – Mobile Broadband 44
– – Music 55
– – One Net 23
– – Red 31, 58
– – Vodafone Cloud 16
– – Vodafone Kippy 40
Project Spring 6, 15, 35, 43, 52
Vodafone Qatar Q.S.C. 29, 53, 61

W

Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
ASDA 47

Y

Yelp 25, 26
Qype 25, 26

Z

Zesko Holding BV
Ziggo 11, 21, 56

About

About Vodafonewatch

Report: #144
Covering: May 2016
Published: June 2016
Next report: July 2016
For more information visit: Vodafonewatch