29 Jun 2010

Telecom chairman committed to the company

5:58 am on 29 June 2010

Telecom chairman Wayne Boyd says he's committed to the beleaguered company until the Government's ultra fast broadband plans are in place.

Mr Boyd, who's been chairman for nearly four years, says he's looking forward to retirement, and will step aside from some of his directorships. But Telecom is not one of those first on the list.

Mr Boyd replaced Dr Roderick Deane as chairman following pressure from larger shareholders for new leadership after the Government forced Telecom to open its network to rivals in 2006.

Four years on, Mr Boyd has presided over a halving of Telecom's share price to under $2 each.

That's not been helped by the Government's push to set up a fibre network, and the Crown's insistence that Telecom split its retail and network arms if it wants to participate.

Mr Boyd is scaling back his directorships as he heads to retirement, but says he's committed to chairing Telecom until the new industry structure is up and running.

He is currently also chairman of Freightways, Meridian Energy and Vulcan Steel, and is involved in Sports & Recreation NZ, the New Zealand Blood Service and the New Zealand Hockey Federation.

Mr Boyd warns Telecom has to choose between participating in the Crown's fibre plans or competing against it, though he says its preference is to work with the Government.

Telecom's shares fell 7 cents to $1.90 on Monday.