UK communications infrastructure company Arqiva named industry veteran Paul Donovan as its new CEO, replacing Simon Beresford-Wylie as part of a leadership shake-up following a proposed £2 billion tower sale to Cellnex Telecom.

In a statement, the company said Donovan (pictured, left) assumed his new role from today (20 April), with departing boss Beresford-Wylie transitioning the role until 30 June.

Donovan has worked with Arqiva since 2017, is on the board as a non-executive director and held senior executive roles across the telecommunications, technology and media sectors. Mike Parton, Arqiva chairman, said Donovan’s experience and skills “will be invaluable for the next phase of Arqiva’s evolution.”

Donovan was CEO of eir Ireland between 2009 and 2012. Prior to this he was regional chief executive for Vodafone Group, leading the operator’s emerging markets businesses. He amassed over nine years with the operator, having also held the roles of Vodafone Ireland CEO and managing director of commercial for Vodafone UK.

He also held roles with Australian operator Optus, BT and Apple.

On his appointment, Donovan said: “Once the proposed sale of our telecoms business completes, we will start a new chapter where our concentrated focus will be on providing the best possible connectivity to our broadcast and utilities customers.”

The sale to Cellnex Telecom is expected to close in H2 2020 and will see the company take full ownership of Arqiva’s 7,400 UK sites.