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Changes At Airtel: Manoj Kohli To Step Down; Gopal Vittal Appointed As New MD

Manoj Kohli

Manoj Kohli will be stepping down as the managing director and CEO (International) of Bharti Airtel effective April 1, 2014, the company has informed BSE. He has now been appointed as the Chairman of Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV which owns telecom operations in Africa. He will also continue on the Board of Bharti Airtel as a Non-executive Director.

Kohli was appointed as the Bharti Airtel’s MD in Jan 2013. Earlier this month, he had however relocated to India after a difficult stint in Africa, where the company had failed to meet the ambitious goals that he had set for the end of FY13. This was due to underestimating the complexity of operating in Africa, and the state of Zain’s network and processes in the continent.

In addition to this, Kohli has also been appointed as the Managing Director of Bharti Enterprises effective April 1, 2014, as indicated by a The Hindu Business Line report. In this role, he will be overlooking all the non-telecom businesses of the Bharti Group which includes retail, food and agriculture, real estate and insurance.

Gopal Vittal To Be Airtel MD and CEO (India & South Asia)

Bharti Airtel has also promoted the current CEO and Joint MD Gopal Vittal as the Managing Director and CEO (India & South Asia), wherein he will have an added responsibility of overlooking Airtel’s Bangladesh and Sri Lanka operations. Vittal was appointed as Airtel’s India CEO in January 2013, after the former CEO Sanjay Kapoor had quit following a 15 years stint with the company. A fortnight later, he was also appointed as Airtel’s joint managing director and additional director.

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Christian de Faria To Be Airtel Africa MD & CEO

Airtel Africa CEO Christian de Faria has been appointed as the Managing Director and CEO (Africa) of Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV, wherein he will be responsible for the full operational responsibility of Airtel’s operations across 17 African geographies. He had been appointed as Airtel Africa CEO in January 2013

New Bharti Enterprises Vice Chairman & Infratel CEO

Bharti Enterprises CEO & Joint MD Akhil Gupta has been promoted as the Vice Chairman of Bharti Enterprises. He will also continue as the Chairman of Bharti Infratel. On the other hand, Bharti Infratel CEO DS Rawat has been appointed as the MD & CEO of Bharti Infratel.

Last month, Bharti Airtel’s Senior Vice President & Chief Information Security Officer Felix Mohan had quit to launch his own venture while Bharti Enterprises Group CIO Jay Menon had also exited the company.

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