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Exetel quietly appoints new CEO

Australian internet service provider Exetel waited almost a year before announcing the appointment of its new CEO Richard Purdy.
Written by Josh Taylor, Contributor

As it celebrates its 10th birthday and the revamp of its brand, privately owned internet service provider Exetel has revealed that its new CEO, Richard Purdy, is now leading the company.

Exetel, which was founded in 2004 by John Linton, and is operated by his family, has approximately 120,000 customers across Australia on ADSL and the National Broadband Network (NBN). A quiet achiever, Exetel often did not make much noise about its wins in the market, or seek to be a voice for the industry, but Linton himself was very outspoken at times on his personal blog, in particular in regards to the former Labor government's NBN project.

Linton passed away suddenly in February 2012, and Exetel's head of engineering, Steve Waddington, who had worked with Linton for 16 years, took over the job as CEO.

In May 2013, however, Waddington left the company, and, according to his LinkedIn profile, now works for Fine Gems and Bespoke Jewelry in Perth. A spokesperson for Exetel confirmed to ZDNet that Waddington resigned in April to spend more time in Perth.

Exetel announced in a press release issued today for its 10th anniversary that Richard Purdy had been appointed as CEO from April last year. The company described Purdy as a "top-performing global executive and experienced aviator" who has worked for New York-based consultancy firm Fahrenheit 212 as its chief operating officer, and, before that, the chief operating officer of advertising agency Lowe Group Oceania.

Purdy said in a statement today that the company is now looking to raise its profile in the marketplace.

"Exetel has been one of Australia's best-kept secrets. We've built a loyal base of over 120,000 services in operation by delivering great value for money and service to both residential and corporate customers. But very few people know who we are. Today marks the start of the next big step in our journey. We intend to let all Australians in on the secret," he said.

The company will start with new NBN plans ranging from AU$39.99 for 100GB of data per month, up to AU$89.99 for unlimited data. The telco's older plans ranged from between AU$49.50 per month for 50GB per month on a 12Mbps plan, up to AU$139 per month for the 100Mbps plan with 500GB of data per month.

Exetel said its new vision is to "cut through the BS and make things happen".

"The new brand slogan is Exetel: Get things done."

The push to promote the Exetel brand in the market comes in stark contrast to the company's history. Waddington told ZDNet in 2013 that Exetel had carved out its own market in the internet industry.

"Exetel has always been, essentially, an engineering company, and I think our sales success is based as much on the solid engineering we can provide to our customers as it is the hard work of our salespeople," he said at the time.

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