After a rough two-year stretch on the job, T-Mobile USA’s CEO Philipp Humm resigned today. While his resignation was somewhat unexpected, Humm’s time at the helm included a failed merger with fellow telecom giant AT&T.
T-Mobile’s parent company Deutsche Telekom said that Humm is going to reunite with his family in Europe, and pursue a career outside of the company. A Wall Street Journal report said that while Humm had been planning to leave in September, he’s exiting early after telling the company that he’d be joining a Telekom competitor.
“Philipp Humm has given the company some important initiatives over the past years,” Deutsche Telekom CEO René Obermann said in a written statement. “Now we need somebody who can convert initiatives into market-successes.”
In the fallout of the failed merger with AT&T in December, T-Mobile received $3 billion, plus another $1 billion in spectrum. That is all well and good, but the fourth-largest wireless carrier in the country still doesn’t have enough spectrum to launch a competitive 4G network.
Now that it’s no longer seeing AT&T in a romantic context, T-Mobile is likely looking to hook up with someone else, as long as that buyer can pass the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice.
One of the biggest hurdles to the AT&T/T-Mobile merger was the two companies’ assertion that they did not consider the other to be a competitor, in spite of years of advertising and marketing to the contrary. At a Senate hearing last May, Humm had a difficult time keeping a straight face when the panelists pressed him to back up this assertion.
T-Mobile USA’s CEO resigns [CNNMoney]