New operating structure and senior management changes at MTN Group



MTN Group has reviewed its operating structure with a view to strengthening operational oversight, leadership, governance and regulatory compliance across its 22 country operations in Africa and the Middle East.

To this end, the Group has resolved to re-implement its previous reporting structure. This will see MTN Group restructured into three regions – namely West and Central Africa  (“WECA”), South and East Africa (“SEA”),  and Middle East and North Africa (“MENA”).  MTN has also made a number of senior appointments to support this structure.

Effective 1 December 2015 Jyoti Desai assumed the new position of Group Chief Operating Officer (“COO”). Based in Johannesburg, she reports to the Executive Chairman, Phuthuma Nhleko. Ms Desai has 14 years’ experience at MTN. She has previously held the positions of Chief Information Officer at MTN Nigeria, was COO of MTN Irancell and was recently seconded to support the Nigerian country operations. Her replacement as Group Chief Technology and Information Officer will be announced soon.

Two regional Vice Presidents (“VP”) have been appointed, also reporting to the Executive Chairman. The VP for WECA is Karl Toriola, with Ismail Jaroudi the VP for MENA. The VP for SEA will be announced soon. 

Based in Nigeria, Mr. Toriola has been at MTN for 10 years, having held senior operational roles at MTN Group and MTN Iran. He was formerly also the Chief Technology Officer at MTN Nigeria and CEO at MTN Cameroon.

Mr Jaroudi has been CEO of MTN Syria since 2006. Prior to this he held senior operational roles for Investcom’s subsidiaries across the Middle East and North Africa.

Also reporting to the Executive Chairman is the new Group Executive for M&A, Matthew Odgers. The former head of TMT for Africa & the Middle East and head of investment banking for MENA at UBS, Mr Odgers led UBS’s overall relationship with MTN.

MTN Nigeria’s CEO Michael Ikpoki and the head of Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Akinwale Goodluck have tendered their resignations with immediate effect.  They are replaced by Ferdi Moolman as MTN Nigeria CEO and Amina Oyagbola as its head of Regulatory and Corporate Affairs. Mr Moolman was previously COO at MTN Irancell and most recently CFO at MTN Nigeria.   A Nigerian national, Ms Oyagbola also retains the position of MTN Nigeria’s Head of Human Resources. She formerly headed regulatory affairs at the Nigerian operating company.

The search for the MTN Group CEO is underway and remains a priority.

Commenting on the announcements, MTN Group Executive Chairman Phuthuma Nhleko said:  “This revised structure and strengthened leadership will improve operational oversight and increase management capacity. This will enable MTN to continue to realise its strategy and vision, while also ensuring we achieve high governance standards and robust risk mitigation.”

With the financial year closing on 31 December 2015, the MTN Group will report its FY2015 results in line with the former structure – namely for MTN Nigeria, MTN South Africa, Large Operating Companies and Small Operating Companies.