John Stratton to retire from Verizon by end of 2018

John Stratton to retire from Verizon by end of 2018

At Verizon, Vestberg had been the chief technology officer, and has done really well.

Verizon Communications on Friday announced that Hans Vestberg will succeed Lowell McAdam as CEO of the company, effective August 1, 2018.

Lowell McAdam, who has been CEO since 2011, will stay on as chairman of the board of directors after he retires. His responsibilities include further developing the architecture for Verizon's fiber-centric networks, including the country's leading 4G LTE network, the largest and first 5G deployment in the USA, the nation's broadest residential fiber network, and a global internet backbone and undersea cable network carrying much of the world's internet traffic.

Vestberg, a native of Sweden, served for six years as president and CEO of that country's big telecom-networking group Ericsson before moving to Verizon.

Verizon has typically relied on a strong wireless network to grow its customer base, but that strategy has faltered recently as competitors, such as T-Mobile, have improved their service and reputation with customers, said BTIG analyst Walt Piecyk. Both were contenders to succeed McAdam, but Walden resigned late previous year after learning she was unlikely to be named CEO. It also closed the largest technology deal of all time in 2014, buying Vodafone's 45% stake in Verizon Wireless for $130 billion.

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Under McAdam, Verizon bought AOL and Yahoo.

The race of bringing in 5G network has drove the company to take up the decision. In a statement, Vestberg called attention to the company's continuing efforts in the space. Vestberg was dismissed from Ericsson two years ago following pressure from unhappy shareholders after series of disappointing financial results.

The lines between telecom and media are rapidly blurring though.

But McAdam expressed confidence about his successor.

"We are experiencing unprecedented changes in the way users interact in the digital world, and we are racing ahead to remain at the forefront of technology, connectivity and mobility,"he said". Since his appointment to EVP and President of Global Operations in 2015, Stratton has led and grown the company's established businesses, including Verizon Wireless, Verizon Enterprise Solutions, Verizon Consumer Markets, Verizon Business Markets, Verizon Partner Solutions and Verizon Connect (telematics).