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Spark's Simon Moutter resigns; insider Jolie Hodson to take charge

By Sara Barker
Wed 3 Apr 2019
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Simon Moutter is hanging up his hat as managing director and company director of Spark New Zealand, to be replaced by Spark insider Jolie Hodson. Effective June 30, Moutter will resign while Hodson will take his place on July 1.

According to Spark chair Justine Smyth, Moutter signed on as managing director in 2012 with the expectation of a five-to-seven-year future in the role.

In that time Moutter has transformed Spark into a vastly different company to what it was in 2012. He had to drive the company’s success following the 2011 Chorus demerger and several years of performance decline.

Smyth adds, “Simon led the way in 2014 with the bold call to rebrand the Company, hanging up on Telecom and logging onto Spark.”

Moutter says he has given his absolute best into putting Spark back on the road to recovery so the company can help New Zealand win big in a digital world.

“I feel it’s the right time to pass the leadership baton on and I am delighted the board has chosen an outstanding leader in Jolie to succeed me. I haven’t made any decisions about what I’ll do after I finish at Spark, other than committing the first couple of months to spending some quality time with my family.”

Hodson joined Spark in 2013 and has held several senior positions including customer director, CEO of Spark Digital, chief financial officer. She has also led major programmes related to Spark’s business transformation.

“The board are particularly pleased that we’ve been able to achieve a very smooth and professional succession arrangement, and in particular we are delighted that Jolie Hodson has been appointed as Simon’s successor,” says Smyth.

“As board directors, we have had the opportunity to work closely with Jolie over recent years on a range of important Company matters and we have been consistently impressed with her business acumen, her strategic vision and her quality decision making. We are delighted to have confirmed a top-quality internal candidate, which speaks to Spark’s desire where appropriate to develop and promote talent from within.”

Smyth adds that Spark is now a wireless communications leader with a promising internet of things (IoT) business, an investment in entertainment and sports media, and more.

“We are making important progress with diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and our financial performance ranks among the industry’s best in this part of the world.”

In other Spark-related news, Splunk has announced that it was secured a contract with Spark to provide software mobile tower monitoring and customer care.

Spark uses Splunk Enterprise and Splunk Enterprise Security (ES) to gain end-to-end visibility into all IT and security layers of the organisation.

Spark has expanded its use of Splunk solutions more than 10 times, migrating tools and replacing legacy platforms to enable the utilization of Splunk throughout the entire organisation. 

''Spark customers expect a great experience when they're using our mobile and landline phones and broadband internet services, and Splunk helps us to keep their phones ringing and internet running. Splunk delivers great time-to-value, and the platform's speed helps us quickly turn requests into insights,” explains Spark’s lead for IT applications, Niall Fitzgerald.

“Spark's use of Splunk has increased over time, and we plan to continue to expand it for multiple use cases across the business, including our business, IT and security operations.”

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