Australian telco Telstra hires Stephen Elop, former Microsoft and Nokia exec

Vu Anh Nguyen

Ex-Microsoftie and ex-Nokia CEO Stephen Elop got hired again, this time by Australian telecom giant Telstra, reports Neowin.

In his new work placement, Stephen Elop will be in charge of “Technology, Innovation and Strategy” as “Group Executive” at Telstra, reporting directly to CEO Andy Penn. With his venerable leadership experiences at major technology companies including Microsoft, Juniper, Adobe, and Macromedia, Elop is expected to bolster Telstra’s business to a “world-class” level. Certainly, Mr. Penn – the company’s CEO – has some nice things to say about his new hire.

“Stephen will immediately add major firepower to our team with his extensive and deep technology experience and an innate sense of customer expectations. He is a recognised informational technology leader and strategist from across a range of global organisations.”

Elop, however, should be best remembered by technology enthusiasts for his role as the last CEO of the full Nokia before the company’s Device and Services division was sold to Microsoft for $7.7 billion; his internal memo to Nokia employees addressing the company’s failed opportunites, often referred to as “Burning Platform“, has become an internet legend. Elop himself reportedly played a large part in the purchase, which has jaded many Nokia fans till this day.

After returning to Microsoft as part of Nokia, and becoming one of the candidates for Redmond’s new CEO to replace Steve Ballmer, Stephen Elop left last year as the crown went to Microsoft’s cloud chief Satya Nadella. Whatever your opinions of the man, one cannot denies that the man has experience in leading tech companies, and we can only wish Elop better luck and a more long-term affair in his new job.

Along with Elop, Telstra also hired a former leader from its chief competitor Optus, Kevin Russell, who will be heading the company’s consumer-focused functions.