T-MOBILES LEGERE STEPS DOWN
By Todd Horwitz
T-Mobile CEO to Step Down
T-Mobile announced Monday that CEO John Legere will be stepping down at the end of next April after his contract expires. The surprise move comes as speculation swirls about the possibility that Legere was a leading contender to become the next CEO of WeWork — although Legere shot down reports that he was looking to take that job.
Legere will be replaced by Mike Sievert, who is currently the president and chief operating officer of T-Mobile. The company said Legere is going to remain a board member and will assist with the company’s pending acquisition of rival Sprint. Sprint is controlled by Japanese investing giant SoftBank, which also has a controlling interest in WeWork.
WeWork is looking for a new CEO after Adam Neumann was forced out when the company was forced to scrap its initial public offering plans due to concerns about its corporate governance and mounting losses.
But Legere said during a conference call with analysts Monday that he never was having discussions with WeWork, adding that rumors about him leaving made things “awkward” since he was already in the process of hashing out a T-Mobile succession plan. Investors took the news of Legere’s stepping down in stride. Shares of T-Mobile were down only slightly Monday while Sprint’s stock rose nearly 1%.
“I’m not retiring,” he said. “I’m already getting a tremendous amount of input of companies that could use cultural transformation, leadership and things similar to what we’ve demonstrated here.” The handover was carefully planned. T-Mobile positioned Mr. Sievert to take on more responsibilities in recent years. He was named chief operating officer and joined its board in early 2018. T-Mobile is controlled by Deutsche Telekom AG, Germany’s incumbent carrier.
Mr. Sievert joined T-Mobile in 2013 after stints at Microsoft Corp.’s Windows software division and at Clearwire Corp., a struggling wireless broadband service that later merged with Sprint.
Todd “Bubba” Horwitz