4/1/2009 12:32:00 PM
Samsung's Jon French set for HTC move
Samsung’s general manager for sales, Jon French, is leaving the manufacturer to take the UK country manager role at HTC, Mobile can reveal.
French, who is among the most senior people at Samsung UK behind Mark Mitchinson, will be charged with building HTC’s brand and market share in the UK and Europe.
The manufacturer has a succession of new handsets planned for 2009 and a large marketing budget to establish itself as a consumer brand.
French (pictured) will be country manager of the UK and Ireland, taking the reins from acting country head Dave Catt, who took temporary charge after previous incumbent Paul Ghent switched to Palm in January this year.
Catt will now return to his previous role of head of sales for the UK, handling retailers and HTC’s sole distributor, Brightpoint.
French is expected to arrive within the next two months, and will immediately handle the launch of the Touch Diamond 2 (pictured) in April and the TouchPro 2 in June. More handsets are expected in the second half ?of the year, with a heavy focus on Google Android.
French has had a six-year career with Samsung, starting on the O2 account, moving to an O2 global account, then head of operator sales and, most recently, general manager.
One source close to Samsung said: ‘He is probably one of the most capable people at any UK division of any manufacturer. He has fantastic relationships with the operators who rate him highly, and he has great judgement on handsets.’
The source added: ‘HTC wants the consumer space, and Jon knows about launching products in that market inside out.’