NSN: Beresford-Wylie out, Rajeev Suri in as CEO

In what has become a common theme amongst the largest telecom equipment vendors, Simon Beresford-Wylie announced his resignation from his CEO post of Nokia Siemens Networks today. He will be replaced by Rajeev Suri, a 20-year telecom industry veteran who has been leading NSN's Services business. To provide the proper transition, Beresford-Wylie will stay on through the beginning of November.   

It has not been an easy road for the outgoing NSN CEO. Beresford-Wylie has steered the company through its initial inception and the merger of the two behemoth companies. NGN plays in a market that's become invaded by low-cost Chinese competitors such as Huawei and has been throttled by a global recession that put most of the large carrier network plans into a holding pattern. Perhaps one of the company's biggest losses came earlier this year when Ericsson outbid NSN for Nortel's CDMA and LTE assets, a win that could have instantly advanced its North American telecom fortunes.

Beresford-Wylie's departure reflects growing change in the top management of all of the large telecom vendors that began last year when the Alcatel-Lucent board of directors ousted both company veteran Pat Russo from the CEO seat and French chairman Serge Tchuruk. More recently, Ericsson's CEO Carl-Henric Svanberg announced he will step down at the end of the year and become chairman of British Petroleum. Then, of course there's Nortel. After posting a net loss of $274 million during the second quarter, Nortel CEO Mike Zafirovski abruptly announced his resignation.

Suri brings his expertise in running the profitable services division to the North American and other international markets. Similar to Alcatel-Lucent and Ericsson, Nokia Siemens Networks sees services as a big growth engine with major services wins from the former EMBARQ, now CenturyLink, and Brazilian telco Tele Norte Leste Participacoes S.A.'s (commonly known as Oi). In NSN's Q2 earnings report, the company reported that services contributed 45 percent to the company's earnings. Now, Suri's challenge will lie in his ability to carry that success into other segments of the company.    

For more:
- see the official release here

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