StarHub appoints former employee as new CEO

Following months of "rigorous global executive search", the Singapore telco unveils Peter Kaliaropoulos as its new chief, who will take over from outgoing CEO Tan Tong Hai in July 2018.

After months on the hunt for a new CEO, StarHub has gone back to a former employee who was part of its executive team when the telco launched its operations in Singapore.

Peter Kaliaropoulos on Friday was unveiled as the company's incoming CEO, effective from July 9 this year. The announcement ended a global search that began after current chief Tan Tong Hai last November said he was stepping down to pursue his own interests.

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Peter Kaliaropoulos

Kaliaropoulos would join StarHub from Zain Saudi Arabia, where he was CEO and touted to have guided the the company to its first net profit last year, a decade since its inception. The 35-year industry veteran also had held various CXO positions in BT Asia-Pacific, Telstra, and Clear.

Notably, he was part of StarHub's pioneer executive team, serving as senior vice president of commercial operations when the telco launched its operations in April 2000 as Singapore's telecommunications market was liberalised.

Elaborating on its search, StarHub said it wanted a CEO who had a diverse experience in the telco industry as well as exhibited "strong leadership beyond conventional frameworks" and understood "new market dynamics around intense competition".

StarHub Chairman Terry Clontz said: "This appointment is the result of an extensive and rigorous global executive search. As a telco veteran with a proven track record of achievements across a wide range of markets and broad industry knowledge, the board is confident Peter is well qualified to lead StarHub in pursuing new opportunities and managing the challenges that operators face today."

An Australian, Kaliaropoulos earned a Master of Business Administration, Marketing and Strategy from the Macquarie University and Bachelor of Engineering, Electrical Engineering from the University of New South Wales.

In its previous announcement, StarHub said Tan would step down from his positions as CEO and executive director from May 1. The executive first joined the Singapore telco in 1999 as general manager of its internet business, before leaving to head local ISP Pacific Internet and systems integrator Singapore Computer Systems. He returned to StarHub as COO in January 2009 and was promoted to CEO in March 2013.

Chief strategic partnership officer, Jeannie Ong, told ZDNet that StarHub's executive board would be "working closely with the senior management team in the interim", after Tan officially stepped down in May and Kaliaropoulos assumed his CEO position on July 9.