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New BT CIO Howard Watson To Lead EE Integration

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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New CIO and BT TSO CEO will oversee network development having launched IT systems for BT Sport

BT will hand the task of integrating EE’s mobile networks with its fixed infrastructure to the man who oversaw the technical launch of its sports channels.

Howard Watson has been named as the company’s new CIO and CEO of its Technology, Services and Operations (TSO) division, replacing the incumbent Clive Selley, who is to become CEO of Openreach.

Currently BT’s chief architect and managing director of its Global It platforms, Watson will oversee a team of 12,000 staff and 8,000 contractors and will be responsible for BT’s core networks, global systems and R&D efforts at Adastral Park in Suffolk.

Read More: The IT Challenges of launching BT Sport

BT CIO

BT Sport App“I am thrilled to be appointed as CEO of BT Technology, Service and Operation,” he said. “It has been my home since 2011 and we have achieved great things under its umbrella. The next few years promise to be transformational in terms of how people communicate and I look forward to making my contribution.”

BT says Watson’s experience of integrating networks in the cable industry – he was chief technology and information officer at Telewest and chief of transformation and technology at Virgin Media – will be invaluable once the £12.5 billion acquisition of EE is completed.

The takeover will help BT develop ‘hybrid infrastructure’ comprising fixed and mobile networks that offer customers “constant connectivity.”

“I am delighted to appoint Howard as CEO of BT Technology, Service and Operations,” added BT CEO Gavin Patterson. “He has done a great job since joining BT in 2011 and is absolutely the right man to oversee the integration of our network with EE’s. Fixed mobile convergence is an important trend and Howard will help consumers and businesses take advantage of it.”

Speaking last year, Watson said the IT challenge of launching BT Sport was a significant one that has made the company more responsive to peaks in demand and ‘TV-Centric’.

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