John Legere will step down from his role as chief executive of T-Mobile in the US next year, and will be replaced by current chief operating officer Mike Sievert.
The departure of the outspoken telecoms boss comes amid frantic speculation that he could be linked with the top job at Wework. However, Legere has since ruled himself out of the job, CNBC reported.
T-Mobile is currently in the final stages of completing its $26.5bn (£20.5bn) merger with rival Sprint, which is controlled by Wework’s majority owner Softbank. Legere’s mooted move to the troubled office space provider could therefore pose a conflict of interest.
Nevertheless, Legere said he will step down from his role when his contract expires at the end of April 2020, though he will retain a seat on the board.
Legere said he will now focus on pushing through the Sprint merger – which has been fraught with legal difficulties – and handing over the reins to his long-serving deputy Sievert.
“I hired Mike in 2012 and I have great confidence in him,” Legere said. “I have mentored him as he took on increasingly broad responsibilities, and he is absolutely the right choice as T-Mobile’s next chief executive.”
During his seven-year tenure Legere has been credited with breathing new life into the US’s third-largest telecoms company, overseeing its so-called un-carrier marketing campaign.
Tim Hottges, chief executive of parent company Deutsche Telekom, said Legere had enjoyed an “enormously successful run” at the helm.
“As the architect of the Un-carrier strategy and the company’s complete transformation, John has put T-Mobile US in an incredibly strong position,” he said.
Shares in T-Mobile dipped marginally following the announcement of the idiosyncratic boss’s departure. Sievert will take over as president and chief executive on 1 May 2020.
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