HTC has instigated a major management restructuring in a bid to turn around its nosediving fortunes.
Shares hit a seven and a half year low last week, after profits fell 83% to NT$1.25bn (£27m). The manufacturer has bet the farm on its One flagship device to turn the business around, in addition to a significant management restructure.
However, industry sources criticised the company for splitting key roles between existing staff and called on the company to boost staff and marketing investment to help stem flagging sales of its devices.
Philip Blair, who was appointed EMEA head in the wake of Florian Seiche’s departure to join Nokia as head of European sales earlier this year, has appointed four general managers to help him run the business across Europe. Peter Frølund, who has responsibility for the Nordic and Baltic regions and HTC’s global account with Vodafone will help Blair run the UK business. The other three general managers are Andre Loenne, leader of the Germany, Austria and Switzerland region, Mark Moons, general manager of Benelux, and Andrey Kormiltsev, country manager of HTC Russia.
A spokesperson said: ‘Philip will continue to head up the UK business but from a broader perspective. The UK business is incredibly important for HTC and Phil wants to ensure he maintains a direct line into that business.’
Elsewhere in the UK region, the role of former UK sales director Mike Coombes, who left in March, has been split between HTC executives Damian Gowland and Daniel Webb. Gowland, Phones 4u account manager, takes on the role of UK head of retail and distribution sales whilst Webb, EE account manager, will head up operational sales. Gaelle Walton, senior marketing manager, has been given additional UK marketing responsibility in the wake of James Atkins’ exit as marketing director in March. Atkins and Coombes departed HTC in the weeks following UK head Phil Roberson leaving the business.
HTC’s VP of commercial operations, Oliver Schulte, the interim replacement for HTC’s MEA vice president Jon French, will also report to Blair. Mobile revealed French’s departure last month.
Industry sources said the restructuring had to go further if HTC was to halt its decline. One insider said: ‘It’s a restructure which has brought in no new faces. It’s fine to give people more responsibility but if you are not doing the back filling as well it won’t work. They are just taking what they have irrespective of experience. Morale is low.’