VEON Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ:VEON) has named the former Xerox veteran Ursula Burns as its new chairwoman during the recent Annual General Meeting that took place on July 24. The appointment comes when the company is undertaking the corporate governance reforms and enhancing its global online services.
The company’s former chairman, Alexey Reznikovich, will remain on board but will be representing the firm on the LetterOne Investment unit. Burns until last year was serving as one of the board of directors of the company. Recently, VEON expanded its board to allow the directors from the two independent investors, the Russian-owned LetterOne Investment, and Norwegian mobile operator Telenor.
VEON is also planning to reinvent itself as an online leading player by launching new products including the instant messaging and mobile services apps in its four new markets which will include Russia and Pakistan.
Burns expressed her eagerness to reinvent the telecom company stating that she is looking forward to support the board to strengthen the company’s corporate governance and its unique culture of compliance. She will also guide VEON’s management team to deliver its long-term goals to enhance the shareholder’s value.
The recent appointments is a huge milestone for the company that has vowed to continuously increase its independence on the Supervisory Board, which enables them to align with the most best governance practices across the whole world.
VEON’s new products and services are positioned to directly compete with giant products on the existing markets including WhatsApp, and Viber which operates in Italy market. The LetterOne Investment which has 48% shares in VEON is planning to retain three seats on the company’s board while Norwegian mobile operator Telenor which has 20% stake in VEON will remain with two seats on board.
Reznikovich is planning to exit the company by September to pursue his own private investments though he will still remain on the company’s board. Burns is the first African-American woman to serve in the capacity of the chief executive on the Fortune 500 Company. She has been serving as the chairman and the CEO of Xerox Corp since 2009 to 2016.