BT has announced that Gavin Patterson will succeed Ian Livingston as chief executive of BT Group plc.
Ian has agreed to take up a role in Government as Minister of State for Trade and Investment. He will continue as chief executive of BT until he steps down from his post and from BT’s Board in September.
Gavin has served as chief executive of BT Retail and as a BT Board member since 2008, having joined the company as a senior executive four years prior to that. He will take over as chief executive of BT Group in September.
Before entering the communications sector, he spent nine years at Procter and Gamble, rising to become European marketing director.
“It is a privilege to have been offered the position of chief executive of BT Group, and I am delighted to accept," he said.
“The company is in a strong place. We have great opportunities ahead and are well placed to take advantage of them, in the UK and internationally. We have the people, the technology and the plans we need to build on our current successes. I look forward to leading a dynamic team to ensure we do just that.”
Sir Michael Rake, Chairman of BT, said: “Ian has done a tremendous job in transforming BT. His decision to accept a government post demonstrates the sense of public service which many of us know to be characteristic. He leaves behind him a very capable team, one which will take forward the strategy that has served BT well and which lays out the path to further success.
“We have a fitting and experienced successor in Gavin Patterson. He has a detailed knowledge of all parts of our business and a track record of success. He was closely involved in creating our strategy and is the right person to take it forward. BT will make yet further progress under his leadership.”
Ian said: "I am honoured to have been asked by the Prime Minister to take on the role of Minister for Trade and Investment, with a remit of helping the growth of British companies and the country’s future economic success.
“It has been an incredibly hard decision to leave BT at such an exciting time. However, the opportunities ahead and the strength of the management team that Gavin will lead mean that the company is in a great position.
“I am immensely proud to have led this company over the last five years. We have made huge progress over the last few years but I know there is still so much more that BT can and will do.”
Ian will join the House of Lords prior to taking up his front-bench Government post in December.
An announcement about the specific September date on which Ian will hand over the BT chief executive's post will follow in due course.