BT appoints Selley to lead Openreach

BT (NYSE: BT) has named Clive Selley as the new CEO of its Openreach division, replacing Joe Garner, who is leaving the company to become CEO of the UK's Nationwide Building Society.

Selley (Source: BT)

Selley, who will take on his new role later this quarter, comes to Openreach with plenty of regulatory and technology experience.

Currently CEO and group CIO of BT Technology, Service and Operations (TSO), Selley oversees a staff of 12,000, as well as 8,000 contractors and a multibillion-dollar budget. He also chairs BT's cybersecurity council and has wide knowledge of the UK's regulatory environment. During his tenure, he has driven the telco's movement into fiber-based broadband, including the doubling of speeds in 2012 and driving research on new technologies like G.fast.

Openreach said in August 2015 that it will move ahead with plans to begin deploying the technology in 2016 and 2017 alongside its FTTC  and FTTP services. It is working with Alcatel-Lucent, now Nokia, on a consumer test of G.fast in Gosforth, located in northeast England.

Openreach continues to grow. The company said that the number of premises using the service over Openreach's network rose from under 7 million when Openreach was created to 19.6 million as of the end of September 2015.

At the same time, the future of Openreach has been in question.

In July, BT CEO Gavin Patterson told Ofcom that if the UK's telecom regulator forces the telco to sell off Openreach, BT would respond by halting new network investments and launching a number of legal challenges against the regulator. A number of BT's competitors like TalkTalk have asked Ofcom to make BT divest the Openreach division as a condition of its $18.2 billion acquisition of wireless operator EE.

BT said in a release that Selley's replacement at BT TSO will be announced in "due course," but did not indicate whether they would look at a mix of internal and external candidates. 

For more:
- see the release

Related articles:
BT Openreach CEO Garner to step down in spring 2016
BT Openreach CEO Garfield to leave company
BT, Alcatel-Lucent expand G.fast broadband testing to 2,000 more UK homes
BT will deploy G.fast in 2016-17 if trial is successful
BT's Patterson threatens lawsuits to 'defend' shareholders if Ofcom forces it to sell Openreach

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