Telstra names consumer, small biz boss Michael Ackland as chief financial officer

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Telstra names consumer, small biz boss Michael Ackland as chief financial officer
Michael Ackland (Telstra)

Telstra has appointed Michael Ackland as its new chief financial officer to replace Vicki Brady as she assumes the CEO role in September this year.

Ackland, who will also assume the role of group executive for strategy and finance, will be promoted from his current role as group executive for consumer and small business.

In an ASX announcement, Brady said Ackland was chosen as her replacement for his strong financial and commercial acumen, as well as his “deep” strategic and operational knowledge of the Telstra business.

“I was thrilled that we were able to appoint an internal candidate to the role - Michael has exceptional credentials and is well placed to continue to drive Telstra’s financial outlook and success,” Brady said.

“He has strong telecommunications experience and his combination of skills will benefit the CFO role greatly. I look forward to partnering with Michael from 1 September.”

Telstra revealed in late March that CEO Andrew Penn will step down after seven years in the role, with Brady named as his successor. Like Brady, Penn was promoted from CFO when he was named CEO in 2015.

Penn also commented on the appointment, saying, “Michael has been instrumental in driving T22 changes, including reducing consumer and small business in-market plans from 1800 to 20, as well as improving consumer and small business customers’ digital experience and decreasing call volumes and complaints.

“His part in the transformation was also delivered while we were managing significant COVID impacts for our customers and our people.

“Michael’s appointment to the CFO role also reinforces the strength of our internal talent and I look forward to continuing to work closely with him as we close out T22.”

Ackland joined Telstra in 2016 as executive director of Telstra Country Wide, and executive of sales and service in 2017. He was named group executive for consumer and small business in 2018.

Prior to Telstra, Ackland worked at General Electric’s ANZ business, starting at GE Capital in 2004 and moving up to senior executive roles, including ANZ CEO of GE Healthcare from 2012 to 2016. He also worked at Boston Consulting Group from 1996 to 2004.

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