BT to Name Ex-ITV Chief Adam Crozier as New Chairman
(Bloomberg) -- BT Group Plc has picked Adam Crozier, former chief executive of ITV Plc, as its new chairman, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.
Crozier, who’s currently chairman of Whitbread Plc, Kantar Group, and Asos Plc, is set to take up the role after the British telecommunications company announced in March that Jan du Plessis would retire, according to the person, who didn’t want to be identified because the decision isn’t public.
Crozier’s expected to step down from his role at Asos, an online fashion retailer, to focus on the new position, according to the Times, which first reported his appointment. He was selected over three other final candidates, the Times said.
A spokesperson for BT said the company has “a process ongoing which is not complete” and that it doesn’t comment on board matters.
The BT board has been split over the pace of changes needed at the company in the wake of du Plessis’s surprise departure. Directors were divided at the time over accelerating decisions around BT’s nationwide broadband network Openreach, as well as restructuring, and wanting more certainty around external issues such as regulation.
Read More: BT’s Board Still Divided on Pace of Change After Chairman Quits
The appointment comes two months after billionaire Patrick Drahi bought a 12% stake in BT via his company Altice UK. Drahi pledged to support BT’s high-speed broadband rollout, and made the disclosure alongside a statement that there were no plans to pursue a takeover. The company had been on the hunt for a partner to help it build out an extra 5 million fiber optic connections by 2025.
The recruitment of Crozier would fit with BT’s track record of looking externally for new chairs and comes after the board has seen a significant overhaul in recent years.
Crozier, 57, has sat at the helm of a number of the U.K.’s big companies, including a seven-year stint running Royal Mail Group Plc, where he drove a turnaround program to modernize the service that involved thousands of job cuts. He’s also a past CEO of the Football Association, the governing body of soccer in England.
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