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Five things to watch April 9: SA regulator announces emergency spectrum release, Veego adds Max Blumberg to advisory board and Helios Towers postpones African expansion

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Capacity shares 5 key stories from around the world making headlines today!

Osram appoints Kathrin Dahnke as CFO

OSRAM Licht AG has appointed Kathrin Dahnke as a member of the management board.

Effective April 16, Dahnke will be responsible for the financial business of the high-tech company succeeding Ingo Bank who will move to ams AG as CFO as of May 1.

Prior to her appointment, Dahnke was most recently a member of the management board of the Neuss-based conglomerate Werhahn KG, which operates in the fields of building materials, consumer goods and financial services. 

"Kathrin Dahnke has extensive experience with medium-sized as well as listed companies in transformation. She has gained great recognition in the industry as a versatile and crisis-tested financial manager and supervisory board member," said Peter Bauer, chairman of the supervisory board of OSRAM Licht AG.

"We are delighted that she is taking on the continuing challenges facing our company with her proven financial expertise.”

SA regulator announces emergency spectrum release

ICASA, South Africa’s telecoms regulator, has announced the emergency release of broadband spectrum to meet the growing internet usage due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

"The emergency release of this spectrum does not ... negate the processes that are currently underway for permanent assignment of spectrum through an auction, the process, which the Authority had committed to finalise by the end of 2020," said the Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) in a statement.

Helios Towers postpones African expansion

Helios Towers has called a halt to its expansion plans in Africa as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“It’s not that the talks are stalled, because you can always have conference calls, but for real mergers and acquisitions to happen, you need things like field investigations.

It will be slower for a few months, but the world will have to return to normal at some point,” said Kash Pandya, CEO of Helios Towers.

The news comes as the company reported its 2019 full year results.

“Helios Towers has had another strong year, both financially and operationally. Revenues increased +9% to $388 million, Adjusted EBITDA grew 16% to $205 million.”

“Our operating profit was a touch below breakeven at $5 million and included $63 million of exceptional items, deal costs and non-cash costs related to our value-accretive site consolidation program,” added Pandya.  

Veego adds Max Blumberg to advisory board

Veego Software announced the appointment of Max Blumberg to the company's advisory board.

Blumberg brings over 20 years of experience from the Telco and Cable industries to the position where his proven ability to bridge network, IT and call-centre optimisation with Veego as it continues to penetrate connected-home service providers globally.

“Max is a perfect fit for our Advisory Board and we are fortunate to attract him,” stated Amir Kotler, CEO for Veego. “

His extreme familiarity with the end-to-end operational value chain of telcos and cable companies will enlighten us with great insights, especially regarding product development and marketing going forward.”

Opportunities for telcos in climate change

According to a report by financial group Macquarie, the opportunity for telcos to act on climate, telcos can maximise of sustainability and climate change.

The report outlines four areas where change can be implemented:

  • Device OEMs could shift production towards repairable/modular systems and embrace the use of recyclable materials.

  • Infrastructure OEMs could find uses for its legacy radio access networks (RAN)

  • and core infrastructure rather than taking a use-once and scrap’ approach.

  • Operators extend their current sustainability focus to include more sustainable product use and reuse, specifically around handsets.

Additionally, the report points to 5G as a key enabler of this, do to the improved energy performance of 5G networks reducing the total footprint of mobile networks by 0.5 billion tonnes of CO2 between 2020-2030.

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