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T-Mobile CEO John Legere accepts the award for CEO of the Year at the 2018 GeekWire Awards. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota)

T-Mobile is making changes to its marketing leadership to further integrate the newly named Metro by T-Mobile into the broader organization, ahead of the proposed megamerger with Sprint, GeekWire has learned.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere and President and COO Mike Sievert outlined the changes in a memo to employees obtained by GeekWire. The executives said the moves will centralize the two brands and help the company better compete against T-Mobile’s wireless rivals.

“Now the teams will be able to strategically manage our portfolio for the whole company’s success – and focus even more on taking customers who are being over-charged and under-served at AT&T and Verizon,” Legere and Sievert wrote.

Here are the main executive changes detailed in the memo:

  • After 14 years with Metro, including 11 as president, Tom Keys is stepping down. During his time, Keys navigated Metro through an IPO and sale to T-Mobile. Keys is retiring but he will continue to stay on as an advisor focusing on the prepaid aspects of the Sprint merger.
  • Matt Staneff, executive vice president and chief commercial officer, has been named chief marketing officer at T-Mobile. Staneff, a 16-year veteran of the company who stepped into the chief commercial officer role after Andrew Sherrard left in late 2017, will oversee T-Mobile’s consolidated marketing teams, which includes groups working on Metro.
  • Nick Drake, executive vice president of marketing and experience, is moving into a new position working on a “confidential new initiative” for the company. A former professional rugby player and marketing executive at companies like Quiksilver and Adidas, Drake will build a team for the ground up to work on this mysterious new project.
  • Executive Vice President of Retail Sales Jon Freier will see his role expand to lead Metro by T-Mobile’s sales. Under the new title of executive vice president, Freier will now lead consumer unit growth for both T-Mobile and Metro.

T-Mobile acquired Metro, then known as MetroPCS, in 2013. The Metro by T-Mobile name debuted last year, and at the same time T-Mobile unveiled several new plans that included subscriptions to Amazon Prime.

At the time of the rebranding in September, Metro had more than 18 million customers, a figure the company said doubled over the last five years. In 2013, Metro’s coverage area included 103 million people, and that figure has grown to more than 323 million. Metro used to operate in just 15 cities, but now it is active nationwide with more than 10,000 retail locations.

Last week, T-Mobile said it added 1.7 million new customers in the first quarter, the company’s 24th straight quarter of at least 1 million total net adds. T-Mobile crossed 80 million customers for the first time, finishing the quarter with a customer base of 81.3 million.

Here is the full memo:

Team,

We delivered our Q1 earnings report last Thursday and as all of you know, we are off to an amazing start in 2019! Our results continue to show that the Un-carrier strategy is working, and we continue to deliver great business momentum. We also continue to innovate and bring new ideas to market – and we do it fast! More importantly, we learn from everything we do, and that mindset has been critical to our continued success!

So today, we are announcing some important changes in our go-to-market organizations. These changes will get us ready for the massive opportunities ahead and they will help us continue to improve on our operating model.

As part of a natural progression from last year’s rebrand of “Metro PCS” to “Metro by T-Mobile” – we are making changes to more fully integrate Metro by T-Mobile into our go-to-market operation and better integrate across our two flagship brands. Now the teams will be able to strategically manage our portfolio for the whole company’s success – and focus even more on taking customers who are being over-charged and under-served at AT&T and Verizon. This is something we’ve been planning together with Tom Keys for some time, and it is designed to capitalize on the strength we’ve already built at Metro. In addition to this change, we are creating a centralized Chief Marketing office to enable our teams to similarly span across the entire business.

First, we have asked Jon Freier to take on an expanded role as Executive Vice President, Consumer Markets with the functional sales leadership of the Metro business unit shifting over to report to him, in addition to his current responsibilities. Jon will drive the new consumer business unit’s growth across both of our major wireless brands nationwide. Jon has been with us for over 24 years (wow!) and has served in a number of leadership roles and worked in sales regions all over the country. Most recently as our EVP of Retail Sales, he has successfully driven our retail transformation and geographic expansion efforts, to help us deliver on our amazing magenta growth! It’s a natural fit to now have our T-Mobile and Metro go-to-market organizations under the same leader as we look to expand and support consumers everywhere. Jon continues to report to Mike. To help make all of this happen, Tracy Lange will take on the Metro Sales & Operations team, and will report directly to Jon, and Charlie Moore will to continue to lead Metro operations reporting to Tracey.

Next, we’re pleased to announce that we have named Matt Staneff as our Chief Marketing Officer reporting to Mike. Matt has been with T-Mobile for over 16 years and has done an outstanding job as our Chief Commercial Officer over the past year and a half. He is an incredibly strategic thinker and a strong leader who has been helping drive the organizations’ segment strategy and working to ensure we deliver on our revenue and financial goals. This expanded role will consolidate all T-Mobile, Metro by T-Mobile, T-Mobile for Business, and Home & Entertainment marketing teams – into one CMO organization. Marketing leaders in these areas, plus the Supply Chain and Devices organization, will now report to Matt. As part of this, Roger Brown, our SVP of Device & Supply Chain will take on an expanded role managing all elements across the device lifecycle, reporting to Matt.

We’re also happy to share that we have asked Nick Drake to make a big change and he will be moving into a newly created role to focus on a brand-new venture for us. Nick will be building a team from the ground up that will jumpstart an important confidential new initiative for the company. Nick will be reporting directly to Mike in his new role. Stay tuned for more on this one when the time comes!

Now, before we wrap up, let’s take a minute to talk about our Metro by T-Mobile business and its leader. Metro by T-Mobile is the #1 prepaid brand and has led the way on so many innovations over the years that I can hardly keep track. Metro has grown under the strong leadership of Tom Keys, who has spent the last 14 years working to build and expand this business with amazing results. After nearly a decade and a half driving the Metro business, Tom is ready to plan for his long-awaited retirement, and he is going to step away from his current leadership role. He has led a phenomenal era of growth, and his track record is nothing short of incredible! Tom joined Metro back in 2005 as Vice President and General Manager – when it covered about 60 million people and had about 2 million subscribers in a handful of markets. As the business grew, MetroPCS went public in 2007 and then joined forces with T-Mobile just 6 years ago in 2013. Today, Metro has more than 10 times the customers than when Tom arrived – and consumers can find us in 77 markets – running on T-Mobile’s nationwide network. Amazing! We are all in awe of what Tom and the entire Metro team have accomplished, and we are pleased to share that Tom has agreed to stay on board for a while longer as a strategic advisor to us on the prepaid aspects of the Sprint merger and other transition work, reporting to Mike. So, please join us in congratulating Tom on his 14 years of success – and stay tuned for a proper retirement send off in the future!

T-Mobile’s future has never been brighter, and our prospects have never looked better! Today’s moves will help set T-Mobile up for our next wave of growth – in wireless and beyond. So thank you for all you do… and remember #WeWontStop!

John Legere Mike Sievert
CEO President | COO
T-Mobile USA T-Mobile USA

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