Airtel may elevate Manoj Kohli as global CEO under new restructuring plan


Sunil Mittal , Bharti Airtel

Telecom Lead India: Sunil Mittal promoted Bharti Airtel is planning to restructure its top management next year.

India’s number one telecom operator is likely to elevate Manoj Kohli, joint MD of Bharti Airtel and CEO of its African operations, as the global CEO.

Manoj, as the global CEO, is likely to be responsible for both India and Africa.

Under him, Sanjay Kapoor, the current CEO of India and South Asia, and Gopal Vittal, director – special projects, will look after Africa and India operations. There will be more clarity on their roles early next year.

Meanwhile, SingTel, partner of Airtel, has recently restructured organization structure. SingTel has announced a new organization structure to grab emerging opportunities targeting its more than 400 million customers. SingTel holds 32.5 percent stake in Bharti Airtel.

Economic Times reported that Manoj Kohli, the joint MD of Bharti and CEO of its African operations, could be the frontrunner to head the combined telecom business of the company across both continents in the new organizational structure that is likely to be in place by the first half of next year. Kohli has been the CEO of Bharti Airtel, and was sent to head the African business after the company acquired Zain’s operations in that region in 2010.

At present, both Kohli and Kapoor report to Airtel chairman Sunil Mittal. Under the new structure, the chief executives of India and Africa will report to the global CEO.

The new organizational structure may also see global heads of key functions such as marketing, IT, finance and sourcing & procurement reporting to the global CEO.The company has already taken the first steps in this direction.

Currently, Bharti is working with consultants and headhunters to extend its One Airtel concept to all geographies.

Meanwhile, Airtel Africa may not meet its target of $5 billion in revenues and $2 billion in core earnings, or EBITDA, during the current fiscal.

TelecomLead.com is presenting details of operations performance of Airtel in Indian and African mobile markets.

As on June 30, 2012, mobile services revenue in India was INR 106,848 million. Africa’s mobile service revenue was $1,066 million.

While India business recorded net profit of INR 14,338 million (INR 15,167 million), Africa chipped in net loss of INR 6,993 million (INR 3,016 million).

As on June 30, 2012, Airtel had an aggregate of 260.7 million customers consisting of 250 million mobile, 3.3 million telemedia and 7.4 million digital TV customers. Its total customer base as on June 30, 2012 increased 13 percent.

During the first quarter, the company recorded revenues of Rs 193,501 million, a growth of 14 percent.

As on June 30, 2012, the company had a total of 20,892 employees. It reduced its employees around 1800 as compared with June quarter in 2011-12.

editor@telecomlead.com