The top 10 telecom industry CTOs

By Harry Menear
Our top 10 list of the executives around the world leading the digital transformation of the telecommunications sector...

With the ongoing pandemic still driving huge demand, as well as creating unprecedented challenges, and a wave of innovation generated by the continuing 5G rollout sweeping across the world, the telecom industry needs leadership, now more than ever. This week, Mobile Magazine is bringing you our list of the top 10 chief technology officers at the forefront of the digital revolution in communications. 

10: Erik Ekudden, Ericsson...

With Ericsson at the forefront of the global 5G infrastructure build-out, their CTO Erik Ekudden has tremendous power to influence the shape of tomorrow’s connected world. Ekudden has served as the Ericsson Group CTO since 2017, after first joining the company in 1993 and working for nearly seven years in its offices in Silicon Valley.  

09: Michael Trabbia, Orange Group...

Previously the CEO of Orange Belgium, Michael Trabbia took over as the Orange Group’s chief technology and innovation officer in September of 2020. He is a graduate of École polytechnique and Télécom ParisTech, and holds a Master of Advanced Studies in Industrial Economics. His current role centres around identifying and seizing upon the opportunities presented by technologies including AI, data and 5G. 

08: Enrique Blanco, Telefónica...

After graduating from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid with a degree in Physics, and acquiring a Masters from the IESE, Enrique Blanco spent three years as a software designer at Standard Eléctrica before joining Telefónica in 1985, gaining the title of Global CTO in 2011. He has won several awards over the course of his career, including CTO of the year in 2014 by Mobile Europe and CTO of the year in the World Communications Awards 2019.

07: Scott Petty, Vodafone...

Scott Petty’s role as the CTO of Vodafone UK is the latest in a 12 year career with the company, which he joined in February of 2009 as its director of business products and services. Petty led Vodafone UK’s 5G rollout last year, and is a vocal supporter of OpenRAN adoption throughout the company’s network infrastructure. 

06: Naoki Tani, NTT Docomo...

Appointed in June of last year, Naoki Tani is the CTO and executive general manager of NTT Docomo’s R&D innovation division. He is responsible for the company’s entire R&D activities, including radio, mobile core, terminals, and services, and for the creation of a vision of future mobile systems and services. 

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05: Kyle Malady, Verizon...

Kyle Malady has served as Verizon’s executive vice president of global networks and CTO since 2019. During his tenure, he oversaw the launch of Verizon’s 5G network, and is currently in charge of Verizon’s intelligent edge network, which remains the US’ largest 5G testbed. 

04: Yoon Kim, SK Telecom...

After a four and a half year stint at Apple, where he oversaw the development of digital assistant Siri, Yoon Kim returned home to Korea in 2018 to join the SK Telecom executive team, first as EVP and head of the company’s AI division, and then as its CTO in December of 2019. As SKT’s CTO, Kim is at the cutting edge of 5G innovation, as SKT - along with other leading Korean operators - continues to dominate the competition in terms of 5G adoption.  

03: Armin Sumesgutner, Deutsche Telekom...

As CTO of Deutsche Telekom Europe, Armin Sumesgutner is responsible for the company’s digital vision in the region. He initially joined Deutsche Telekom in 2017 as its SVP of fixed mobile engineering for Germany, taking on his current role in May of last year. 

02: Abdul Saad, T-Mobile...

Abdul Saad has worked at T-Mobile for 19 years. Currently, he serves as the company’s CTO and Executive Vice President, and is responsible for leading T-Mobile’s end-to-end network growth and evolution. He oversaw the company’s launch of its nationwide 5G services in 2019. 

01: Andre Fuetsch, AT&T...

Responsible for overseeing the global digital strategy for AT&T, Andre Fuetsche has served as the company’s CTO and President of AT&T Labs since JUly of 2016. He first joined the company in December 2012 as its Senior Vice President of Information Technology, and attended UC Berkeley and Stanford for his BA and Masters, respectively. 

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