Vodafone’s group CEO Arun Sarin will announce his departure from the position at the company’s annual results this afternoon.
He will leave in July this year after five years at the helm of the organisation, and be replaced by Vodafone’s European chief, Vittorio Colao.
The news came as Vodafone reported its full-year figures, revealing a 5.7% rise in operating profits £10.1bn for the 12 months to March 31.
India-born Sarin, 53, joined Vodafone's board in 1999 and became chief executive in July 2003.
Sarin’s reign at Vodafone will be characterised by a disruptive board two years ago when he was close to be pushed out, which he managed to pacify, and more positively, a strategy to establish Vodafone in emerging markets such as South Africa, Eastern Europe, Egypt, Turkey and India.
Colao will take the top position at Vodafone after being in charge of the company’s European business where the strategy has been to cut costs and centralise some core operations such as handset buying and technology.
Colao first joined Vodafone when the UK operator bought Omnitel in Italy, which Colao was in charge of.
He was briefly out of the business between 2004 and 2006 when he left to head RCS, a publishing giant in Italy.
Also on Vodafone’s group senior management team are CFO Andy Halford, and emerging markets boss, Paul Donovan.