Ericsson’s flamboyant President and CEO Hans Vestberg has stepped down from all his positions with immediate effect and the board has appointed Jan Frykhammar, the current Executive Vice President and CFO, as the new CEO until a new CEO is in office.
“Hans Vestberg has led the company for seven years through significant industry and company transformation. Hans has been instrumental in building strong relationships with key customers around the world and his leadership and energy have been an inspiration to employees and leaders across Ericsson. However, in the current environment and as the company accelerates its strategy execution, the Board of Directors has decided that the time is right for a new leader to drive the next phase in Ericsson’s development,” said Chairman of the Ericsson Board Leif Johansson.
Jan Frykhammar, the current Executive Vice President and CFO has been asked to take up the key role until a full-time CEO has been selected. The company has initiated search of right talent, both from internal as well as external candidates.
“I have had 28 fantastic years at Ericsson, the last seven as CEO. As the industry enters a next phase, driven by 5G, IoT and Cloud, it is time for a new CEO to step in and continue the work to ensure Ericsson’s industry leadership,” Hans Vestberg said.
In conjunction to presenting its earnings report for the second quarter on July 19, the company presented a strong action plan to significantly reduce cost and adapt to the current market environment.
“As stated in the report the Board fully supports the cost reduction plans. In addition, the Board supports the company business strategy and new company structure,” Johansson continued.
In place of Frykhammar, the current CFO, Carl Mellander, currently VP & Group Treasurer, is appointed acting CFO with immediate effect.
Jan Frykhammar joined Ericsson 1991, and has held various positions in finance and business control. In 2009, Frykhammar became Executive Vice President, CFO and Head of Group Function Finance, and before that he was Head of Business Unit Global Services. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and Economics from the University of Uppsala, Sweden.
Ericsson, in a statement said, Hans Vestberg will be available to support the Board and management during his term of notice of six months.