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Telecom's Moutter steps down from board of debt-issuing unit

BUSIONESSDESK: Telecom Corp boss Simon Moutter has stepped down from the board of the phone company's debt-issuing unit to focus on running the firm's main operations.

Mr Moutter's resignation, effective today, leaves him free to "focus his efforts on Telecom's core portfolio", TCNZ Finance says in a statement to the stock exchange.

The company is wholly-owned by Telecom to raise debt funding locally and abroad to pay for the group's operations. The unit also manages Telecom's foreign exchange and interest rate risks.

Mr Moutter will lay out his grand plan for the country's biggest listed company early next year after hitting the road to get a sense of what stakeholders want.

He is expected to announce Telecom's business strategy early next year as he works to build on its position in a post-Chorus environment and as more customers switch to better technologies.

An early initiative he has pushed is making Telecom compete more aggressively in broadband to prevent customers leaving on price.

The remaining directors on TCNZ Finance's board are Telecom general counsel Tristan Gilbertson, chief financial officer Nick Olson, group controller John van Woerkom and general manager of capital markets Mark Laing.

TCNZ Finance has some $535 million in five bonds listed on the NZX's debt market and maturing between 2013 and 2016.

Telecom's shares rose 0.6% to $2.48 in trading on Friday and have gained 20% this year.

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