Spark NZ names new CEO, customer director

spark NZTelecommunications company Spark New Zealand’s customer director Jolie Hodson has been named chief executive effective July 1.

Hodson will be replaced by Grant McBeath who joined the company in 2013 as general manager of sales for Spark’s consumer and SMB business.

“McBeath has a strong track record of building high performing teams and delivering for customers not only at Spark, but in his time in global executive roles in companies like Nokia,” Hodson said.

“The role requires a deep understanding of both the competitive market Spark operates in and the evolving needs of our customers, which Grant absolutely possesses as a result of his extensive experience managing Spark’s consumer sales and customer channels.”

Spark has also announced that current ‘Future director’ Nagaja Sanatkumar has stepped down.

Sanatkumar, who was previously the general manager of global e-commerce at Icebreaker, joined the Spark Board in September 2017 under the Future Director Programme run by the New Zealand Institute of Directors.

After an initial 12-month appointment, Nagaja’s tenure with the Spark Board was extended by a further six months to June 2019. In March 2019, Nagaja was appointed as a director on the New Zealand Post Board, cutting short her term as Spark’s Future director to April 9.

The Future Director programme is run by the New Zealand Institute of Directors and aims to give talented people with an interest in corporate governance the opportunity to observe and participate in boardroom discussions for a 12-month period.

The aspiring directors attend all board meetings, although they do not have voting rights and are not involved in decision making.

“We are delighted to hear about Nagaja’s appointment to the NZ Post Board and wish her all the best for that role,” said Spark board chair Justine Smyth.

Spark said they will consider the appointment of another Future director in the coming months.

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