Deutsche Telekom said that Rene Obermann (pictured), its CEO, is to stand down at the end of 2013, with his role to be filled by the company’s current CFO, Timotheus Hottges.
In a statement, Obermann said that “this is the right time to prepare to pass the baton and ensure a smooth transition”.
The international operator will appoint Hottges as its deputy CEO as of 1 January 2013, in addition to his current duties, before Hottges assumes the CEO position exactly a year later.
While Obermann has not detailed his reasons for departure, he said that “I want to go back to having more time for customers, for product development and for technology”.
Hottges has had a long career with DT, having joined the company in 2000. He has held positions including CFO of T-Mobile Germany, CEO of T-Mobile Germany and chief sales and service officer of T-Mobile Europe, before moving into the company’s management board and taking over responsibility for its German fixed line operation.
As group CFO, he oversaw moves including the creation of Everything Everywhere in partnership with Orange, the settlement of Deutsche Telekom’s Polish ownership dispute, and the aborted sale of T-Mobile USA to AT&T – which “although not approved by regulators, did lead to the payment of a considerable break-up fee to Deutsche Telekom”.