Thursday, March 23, 2023

GSMA appoints Axiata GCEO Designate Dato’ Izzaddin Idris as Board Member

Axiata Group Berhad announced that its Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) Designate Dato’ Izzaddin Idris, has been appointed to the Board of the GSMA for a two-year period beginning January 2021 through December 2022.

Axiata Deputy Group Chief Executive Officer (Deputy GCEO) and GCEO Designate Dato’ Izzaddin Idris

Dato’ Izzaddin Idris is also currently the Deputy Group Chief Executive Officer (Deputy GCEO) of Axiata Group. He is expected to take over as Group CEO of Axiata from Tan Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim beginning 1st January 2021. Tan Sri Jamaludin Ibrahim is currently one of the Board Member of GSMA, from January 2019 until the end December 2020.


The GSMA is a global organisation representing the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting more than 750 operators and nearly 400 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem. Among others, its advocacy work brings together the public and private sector to tackle some of the world’s most pressing challenges such as expanding digital inclusion and literacy, improving access to spectrum, modernising regulation, protecting privacy, and aligning the industry on climate action.

The GSMA Board comprises 26 members from the world’s largest operator groups and smaller independent operators with global reach, each bringing to the table unique voices, views and perspectives to achieve a unified sense of direction for the mobile industry as the industry adapts to a new operating landscape across the globe.

The GSMA Board for the 2021-2022 term includes:

  • Stéphane Richard, Chairman and CEO, Orange Group
  • Juan Carlos Archila, EVP International Affairs, América Móvil
  • Susan Johnson, Executive Vice President, Global Connections and Supply Chain, AT&T
  • Izzaddin Idris, Group CEO (from 1st Jan 2021), Axiata
  • Gopal Vittal, CEO, Bharti Airtel Group
  • Gao Tongqing, Executive Vice President, China Mobile
  • Liu Guiqing, Executive Vice President, China Telecom
  • Mai Yanzhou, Senior Vice President, China Unicom
  • Dominique Leroy, Board Member for Europe, Deutsche Telekom Group
  • Mats Granryd, Director General, GSMA
  • Christian Salbaing, Deputy Chairman, Europe, CK Hutchison
  • Makoto Takahashi, CEO, KDDI
  • Hyeonmo Ku, President and CEO, KT
  • Ralph Mupita, Group President and CEO, MTN
  • Alexey Kornya, President and CEO, MTS
  • Motoyuki Ii, President and CEO, NTT DOCOMO (incoming)
  • Mathew Oommen, President and Member of the Board of Directors, Reliance Jio
  • Yuen Kuan Moon, Group CEO (from 1st Jan 2021), Singtel
  • Nasser Al Nasser, Group CEO, STC
  • Luigi Gubitosi, CEO and General Manager, Telecom Italia
  • Julio Linares López, Member of the Board of Telefonica Companies, Telefonica Group
  • Sigve Brekke, President and CEO, Telenor
  • Andrew Penn, Group CEO, Telstra
  • Kaan Terzio?lu, Group Co-CEO, VEON
  • Rima Qureshi, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Verizon
  • Ahmed Essam, Chief Commercial Operations and Strategy Officer, Vodafone Group

Commenting on the appointment, Dato’ Izzaddin said, “I am honoured and privileged for the opportunity to serve and contribute towards the advancement of the industry through this appointment to the GSMA Board. It certainly reflects the continued confidence and recognition that GSMA has in the work that we have achieved across our footprint of 11 countries across Southeast Asia and ASEAN where we operate digital telcos, digital businesses and a regional infrastructure company.”

“We recognise that the role of the telecommunications industry has evolved from being a provider of connectivity into a digital growth engine critical to rebuilding economies and societies worldwide. Whilst carrying this important responsibility in partnering governments and businesses towards digital-led recovery, there is also a need to ensure sustainable business models that continue to benefit our customers and communities over the long term,” he added.

“As we face new challenges, the industry is bound to benefit from the diverse and collective perspectives and leadership of the GSMA Board members, and I look forward to bringing Axiata’s learnings on board as we contribute towards progressing the industry and Advancing Asia,” he offered.

In GSMA’s press release on the appointments, its Director General, Mats Granryd said, “We thank the GSMA Board for its exceptional support during what has been a challenging year. The Board’s insight, direction and support were integral as we navigated difficult decisions. There has never been a more crucial moment for the mobile ecosystem to work together, unlocking the full power of connectivity so that people, industry and society thrive.”

Kugan is the co-founder of MalaysianWireless. He has been observing the mobile industry since 2003. Connect with him on Twitter: @scamboy

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