Telstra makes former Ericsson exec Eriksson its CTO

Australia's incumbent telco continues to fill missing executive holes, appointing an Ericsson CSO to the role of CTO.

Telstra has announced that Ericsson's outgoing chief strategy officer for South East-Asia and Oceania Hakan Eriksson will be joining the telco as its new chief technology officer.

Prior to his most recent post as regional CSO, Eriksson was Ericsson's Australia and New Zealand CEO for four years following a nine-year stint as group chief technology officer for the networking giant, which included performing the role of Ericsson's president for two years out of California's Silicon Valley.

"I believe Hakan will bring significant leadership to the CTO role with his success in building Ericsson's technology leadership, driving research development, and significant developments in the convergence of wireless and fixed line," Telstra group executive for Technology, Innovation and Strategy Stephen Elop said. "In his role as Head of Ericsson Silicon Valley, he built strong relationships within the local ecosystem."

Eriksson's relationship with Telstra dates prior to his appointment, having announced a partnership with the telco giant last year that has the pair test 5G together as standards and technologies are developed over the next five years.

"He has an intimate understanding of the Australian market and our business, a proven track record, and a passion for technology and the customer experience," Elop added.

"Hakan will provide significant global expertise in innovation as the company strides forward with its transformation to become a world-class technology company that empowers people to connect."

Eriksson is currently a member of the board of directors for the European Australian Business Council; the national councillor and vice president, Victoria, for the Australian Industry Group; and also formerly performed the role of deputy chairman of the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association.

The new CTO will begin his appointment towards the end of February next year, joining former Juniper Networks chief financial and operations officer Robyn Denholm, who was announced last week as the telco's incoming chief operations officer.

Denholm will take over COO responsibilities from Telstra group executive global enterprises and services Brendon Riley, who had been filling the role on an interim basis following the retirement of COO Kate McKenzie in July.