Airtel announces new appointments to bolster its Francophone operations

New Managing Directors in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Gabon

– Airtel taps two of its most experienced African executives to steer Central Africa operations

– Gabon and DRC telecommunications sectors provide different outlooks for Airtel’s growth on the continent

Airtel Africa (http://www.airtel.com) has today announced the appointments of Louis Lubala and Antoine Pamboro as the new Managing Directors of its operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Gabon respectively.

The new development sees the two vastly experienced Airtel top executives, take leadership roles in two African nations with diverse potential in the telecommunications sector. Gabon has one of the highest teledensity statistics at over a 100 percent whilst DRC, the second largest country in Africa by area, has an approximated 25 percent penetration.

Speaking on the appointments, Mr. Tiemoko Coulibaly, CEO (Francophone Africa), Bharti Airtel, said: “These appointments are a clear indication of our commitment to appreciate and tap into the deep reservoir of management skills of the blue chip executive pool in Africa. Mr. Luballa and Mr. Pambaro have the requisite experience and leadership skills to successfully steer our top francophone operations.” He added: “Both executives will bring different perspectives to two of Africa’s most dynamic telecommunications markets.”

Louis and Antoine will add significant value to Airtel’s customers in each country, Mr. Luballa will lead an aggressive agenda in DRC to ramp up the organization’s network capabilities and grow availability across the vast country whilst Mr. Pambaro will build a strong data proposition for Airtel’s customers in Gabon.

Mr. Pambaro, holds a Master’s Degree in Telecommunications Civil Engineering from the Superior National School of Telecommunications, France and a Bachelor’s degree in Maths & Physics from the University of Reims, France. A career Engineer, he headed operations in Airtel DRC and brings over 28 years of deep telecommunications experience in both the Public and Private Sectors. He joined the company in 2000 from MTN having had a very successful career spanning several senior leadership roles.

Before taking up the DRC Managing Director role, Antoine had been working as Managing Director for Celtel Congo Brazzaville. Mr Pambaro also worked for Camtel Mobile in Cameroon as Managing Director.

Antoine’s time at Airtel DRC saw him grow the customer base to over 7 million over a period of 5 years since he took up the position. This was achieved through a unique Airtel business model with a deep regional focus that created robust relationships with key stakeholders.

Before his appointment as the Managing Director for DRC, Mr. Luballa headed Airtel operations in Gabon. He brings over 25 years’ experience from both the telecommunication and the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) sectors having worked with multinational companies such as Electric Liberty – South Africa, Multi-Choice Africa, World Space – Southern Africa, Quantum International, Unilever Cote d’Ivoire, Lever Brothers South Africa and Unilever DRC.

Louis’s tenure at Airtel Gabon saw him register growth in revenue market share, whilst building a stable, sustainable business model since July 2010. Previously, Mr. Luballa headed operations as the Managing Director for Niger between July 2008 and June 2010 and Marketing Director in Zambia from August 2006 to July 2008.

Source: APO – Press Release – 8 October 2012