BT Group to hire Telia’s Allison Kirkby for CEO job

Telia Company’s President and CEO, Allison Kirkby, has made a significant decision to step down from her current role to assume the position of Chief Executive at BT Group, the largest telecom group in the UK. Allison Kirkby will be taking over from the outgoing BT Group CEO, Philip Jansen.
Telia CEO Allison KirkbyThe announcement was made by Telia Company, and the Board of Directors has already received Allison Kirkby’s resignation. The company will promptly begin the process of searching for a new CEO. However, Allison Kirkby will continue to serve as President and CEO of Telia Company until January 31, 2024, at the latest.

Since taking over as President and CEO of Telia Company on May 4, 2020, Allison Kirkby has led the company through a transformative period, implementing a renewed strategy with a focus on the Nordics and Baltics, and successfully guiding the company towards growth across its footprint.

In a statement, Allison Kirkby expressed her reasons for the decision, stating, “After almost 10 years of living apart from my family, and the opportunity now offered to me in the UK, I have carefully considered and decided to leave Telia and take on a new challenge. In the meantime, I will continue in my role, driving our current agenda forward with full focus and commitment during the remainder of my tenure.”

BT Group confirmed Allison Kirkby’s appointment as Chief Executive, and she will assume the position around the end of January 2024, at the latest.

Allison Kirkby has an impressive track record in the telecommunications industry, having served as CEO of Telia Company from 2020 to 2023, President & CEO of TDC (2018-2020) in Denmark, and President & CEO of Tele2 AB (2015-2018) in Sweden and the Baltics. She has also been a Non-Executive Director at BT Group since 2019.

BT Group Chairman, Adam Crozier, expressed his enthusiasm for Allison Kirkby’s appointment, stating, “The Board is delighted to have appointed Allison as our new Chief Executive. She is a proven leader, with deep sector experience and a history of having transformed businesses. I look forward to supporting her as we drive our long-term strategy to transform BT Group, ensuring it delivers for all our stakeholders.”

In terms of remuneration, Allison Kirkby will receive an annual salary of £1,100,000 from BT Group. Additionally, she will be entitled to a cash allowance in lieu of a pension, amounting to 10 percent of her salary, and other benefits consistent with BT Group’s Remuneration Policy. The annual bonus is set at 120 percent of her salary, with a maximum potential of 200 percent based on performance. Half of the annual bonus will be deferred and invested in BT Group shares for an additional three years without any additional performance conditions.

Furthermore, Allison Kirkby will be granted a long-term Restricted Share Plan (RSP) award equivalent to 200 percent of her salary, vesting in three equal tranches over three, four, and five years from the date of grant. She will be required to retain all vested shares until five years after the grant. As part of her commitment to the company, Allison will also be expected to build a shareholding equivalent to 500 percent of her salary within five years.

Allison Kirkby’s appointment as the Chief Executive of BT Group comes with high expectations, and the telecommunications industry will be closely watching her leadership as she takes on this new challenge.