KT, said Friday that the telecom company had chosen Koo Hyun-mo, as its new CEO and president. Koo is the head of KT’s customer & media division. He will replace the incumbent CEO and Chairman Hwang Chang-gyu, whose term ends in March 2020.
According to the company, the mobile carrier’s board of members made a unanimous decision to appoint Koo as the next CEO. He will have a three-year term officially swearing-in March after gaining approval from a general meeting.
Koo will become the first figure to be appointed in-house as the CEO of the telecom company after 11 years. The firm only recruited outside nominees for the position since 2008.
The nation’s second-largest mobile carrier, citing “national sentiment” as a reason, decided to “downgrade” the rank of the newly appointed chief from being called CEO and chairman to CEO and president.
Kim Jong-goo, board chairman of KT, said, “The nominee was found to have professionalism and insight in ICT and be fully capable of agilely responding to the fast-changing business environment.” He added, “Koo also suggested a clear and detailed strategic plan to increase the corporate value of KT, so we concluded he is the most qualified person.”
Koo Hyun-mo became part of KT in 1987, finishing a major in industrial engineering at Seoul National University.
KT commits to transparency, reforming its CEO recruitment system by extending the selection process to four stages instead of two. The screening committee shortlisted nine candidates on December 12 after the company received applications from 37 candidates in November.
The South Korean telecom company has been criticized earlier as some of its previous chairmen have been involved in scandals such as corruption, collusive ties to political figures, embezzlement, and accusations of bribery.
The screening committee conducted interviews on Thursday, singling out Koo as the only viable candidate for the top post.