The MTN Group on Monday announced two important new appointments: that of chief executive officer of major subsidiary MTN Nigeria Communications Plc and that of MTN Group chief risk officer, a new group executive committee (exco) position. Both are effective from 1 March 2021.
Karl Olutokun Toriola, current vice president for MTN Group’s West and Central Africa (WECA) region, will take over as MTN Nigeria CEO from Ferdi Moolman, who has served MTN Nigeria with distinction in this role for the past five years. Ferdi will return to South Africa, where he will assume the new role of group chief risk officer.
Karl has a BSc Hons in Electronic and Electrical Engineering and a MSc in Communication Systems. Ferdi has a BCom and BCompt. He is a CA(SA). Both will remain members of the group’s exco.
In his five years as VP of MTN’s WECA region, Karl has overseen the steady progress of the operating companies in the region, notably the turnaround of MTN Ivory Coast and MTN Cameroon over the past two years.
In addition, the WECA markets have made significant commercial and strategic strides, including the improvement of market share and the development of mobile financial services. The latter in particular is an important driver of the group’s medium- to long-term growth strategy.
Since joining the group in 2006, Karl (48) has also held a number of senior operational roles at MTN, including chief technical officer of MTN Nigeria and CEO of MTN Cameroon. He is also a board member on a number of companies within the group, including MTN Nigeria. Karl’s successor as VP for WECA will be announced after the group strategy review is completed by the end of November 2020.
Ferdi (57) joined MTN in 2002 and has held several senior positions within the group in Nigeria and in Iran. He has spent the past five years as the CEO of MTN Nigeria and, as its CFO prior to that. During that time, significant progress has been made in stabilising the business and setting it on a sustainable growth path.
The management of enterprise-wide risk is integral to MTN’s growth strategy and Ferdi will bring extensive operational and financial experience to the role given his deep knowledge of the MTN Group, its markets and the telecoms sector. Ferdi will remain on the board of MTN Nigeria and will in due course be appointed to other material subsidiary boards given his new group responsibility.
“Karl brings extensive technical and commercial experience, as well as a deep understanding of the Nigeria market to the role,” commented MTN Group President and CEO Ralph Mupita. “Karl started his MTN career in his home country at MTN Nigeria 14 years’ ago and has all the attributes necessary to lead this very important business into the future.”
“Ferdi has been an exemplary leader of MTN Nigeria and has put the business on a sound growth platform for the future,” said Mupita. “He brings significant strategic, financial and operational experience to the new group risk role, where we want to ensure that our enterprise-wide risk management systems are continuously strengthened and remain resilient as we drive our growth strategy.”
MTN Group owns 78,8% of MTN Nigeria, which is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange and contributes around a third to the group’s service revenue.