Verwaayen (or Big Ben, as we like to call him) previously designated 2009 as "a year of transition," and now he's looking to Agnellini to make sure Alcatel-Lucent won't need to be so inwardly focused in 2010.
"Victor’s nomination today is a major step in making sure that at a global level, we have the transformation activities in our systems, processes, strategy and culture all fully orchestrated," stated the CEO in today's news release. "This is a critical step in returning the company to profitability while staying entirely focused on our customers’ needs."
Profitability has been a bit of an issue at Alcatel-Lucent of late: The vendor followed a disastrous 2008 with a poor start to 2009. It reports its second-quarter earnings this Thursday (July 30). (See Hard Times for Alcatel-Lucent and AlcaLu Ends 2008 With €5.2B Loss.)
Capital move for Agnellini
Before his new role as Big Ben's dedicated Transformer, Agnellini was president of AlcaLu's Caribbean and Latin American operations. (See Codetel Does IPTV With AlcaLu.)
Now he's based in Paris and responsible for all sorts of stuff related to the vendor's new strategy (as outlined late last year), which includes cutting costs, shaking up the troops, refocusing the portfolio, and turning Alcatel-Lucent into a "normal company." (See AlcaLu's New Vision: More Convergence and Verwaayen Unveils AlcaLu's New Plan .)
That process involves a lot of different actions that could, in a company as large and widespread as AlcaLu, easily take place in a haphazard and disjointed manner, so Agnellini's main task is to "orchestrate the transformation initiatives being done throughout the company into a single global project." Let's hope he can multitask.
Agnellini's remit, which looks Herculean, includes (take a deep breath):
- Aligning "the company and its portfolio and R&D" around the vendor's "application enablement vision." That's a lot of "I Heart Telco 2.0" badges to hand out!
- Improving and streamlining AlcaLu's "structure, processes, balance sheet, and business model, including developing an ecosystem of co-sourcing partners such as the recent alliance with HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ)." So at any one time he'll need to act like a CEO, CFO, and chief strategy officer all rolled into one. Will he get any time off? (See AlcaLu, HP Combine on IT.)
- "Enhancing decision making and improving customer engagement through reducing management complexity, simplifying the customer relationship processes, and encouraging a collaborative corporate culture by further improving the already strong use of Web 2.0 communication technologies within the company." Sounds as if Agnellini might have a lot of Facebook and Twitter accounts to monitor.
— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading