Three UK

Three UK and Ireland merge to achieve greater scale

CK Hutchison moves to combine its British and Irish businesses

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Three UK today announced that Dave Dyson has informed the company of his intention to step down from his role as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for personal reasons. Dave will be succeeded by Robert Finnegan, who is currently CEO of Three Ireland. Robert will retain his current role as well as taking over as CEO of Three UK on 30 March 2020.

Dyson will continue to serve in all his current Board roles and as a senior executive resource to Three’s parent company CK Hutchison Group Telecom Holdings (“CK Hutchison Group Telecom” or “CKHGT”).

Three UK chief marketing officer Shadi Halliwell is leaving the business as part of the major restructure that will involve the merging of its marketing and customer teams.

Halliwell, who joined in 2017 will depart in the summer after overseeing the delivery of its latest 5G marketing campaign.

Dyson commented:

“Since Shadi joined us in 2017, she has made a huge impact on our brand, leading our successful ‘#PhonesAreGood’ advertising campaign and helping us to build partnerships with household names like easyJet and Snapchat,” Dyson said.

“More recently Shadi led the signing of our exciting new sponsorship deal with Chelsea FC and our 5G campaign, which highlighted our leading 5G spectrum holding and showcased our ultra-fast capabilities through an immersive audience experience at London Fashion Week.

“On behalf of Three, I would like to thank Shadi for the enormous contribution she has made and we wish her all the best for the future.”

Halliwell said it had been a “privilege” to work for the company. She added:

“Three has always been a pioneer in the telecommunications industry and I am confident that its bold approach to marketing and customer engagement will continue to grow from strength to strength in the years ahead.”

Elaine Carey, chief commercial officer of Three Ireland, joins the UK operation as chief commercial officer, to lead the combined customer and marketing teams.

One of CK Hutchison Group Telecom’s core objectives has been to move progressively towards a greater alignment of Three Group Europe’s businesses and platforms. With the merger between Three and O2 in Ireland nearly completed, and the opportunity to appoint a new CEO of Three UK, now is the time to take the next step towards greater alignment.

As CEO of both Three Ireland and Three UK, Finnegan will have a mandate across both businesses, which is expected to accelerate meaningful growth opportunities.

Finnegan has been Three Ireland’s CEO since the company’s launch in 2005, growing the operator’s market share from 1% to 36% in that time. Under Robert’s leadership, Three Ireland has completed IT and network consolidation programmes, transforming the business into the largest data network in Ireland carrying more than all other operators combined.

Canning Fok, Managing Director of CKHGT, said: 

“We are always looking to create competitive advantages that support our growth aspirations. 5G is an exciting opportunity for both businesses and it’s a good time to pool our resources across the UK and Ireland to do that. I would like to thank David for his significant contribution as the CEO of Three UK and I look forward to continuing to work with him both in his Board roles and as a senior executive resource to CKHGT going forward.”

Finnegan has been Three Ireland’s CEO since the company’s launch in 2005. He led the team responsible for the acquisition of O2 Ireland in 2014. Since then, under Roberts leadership Three Ireland has completed full IT and network consolidation programmes and their significant digital transformation programme will complete very soon.

Three Ireland says it now has the largest data network in Ireland carrying more than all other operators combined. Three Ireland’s market share has grown from 1% to 36% under Robert’s lead.

Finnegan commented:

“With the integration of the Three and O2 business in Ireland largely complete, we now have a solid platform to look at the next phase of our development. Collaborating more and progressively aligning operations and platforms with Three UK is an obvious opportunity and I am excited to be taking on this challenge as the CEO of both operations.”

Dave said:

“Three UK is very well positioned to grow in the market after a period of investment in 5G spectrum and more modern IT systems and processes. Robert joins at an exciting time in our history and the combined assets of the UK and Ireland businesses are a fantastic platform to deliver against customer demand. I wish Robert and all the employees of Three UK and Ireland the very best and I am delighted to be staying involved at Board level and as a senior executive resource to CKHGT.”

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