Billing Services Group Limited (AIM: BILL) today announced that Roland Josef Bopp will join the company, effective April 15, 2006, as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and as a director on the board of directors. The companyâ€™s current CEO, Patrick J. Haynes III, will remain with the company, becoming Chairman of the board, with particular responsibility for group strategy. Patrick Heneghan, current Chairman, will continue on the board as vice-Chairman and senior independent non-executive director. The Bopp appointment is a strategic response to BSGâ€™s dynamic growth and increased global expansion over the past year.
Mr. Bopp, a German national, brings more than 20 years of executive leadership in telecom service organizations in both North America and Europe. His most recent position was Chairman, President & CEO of the Americas for Deutsche Telekom Inc., a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom of Germany, that was based in New York. Over a period of three years he led the successful expansion of that business via both organic growth and through acquisitions. Prior to that, he was managing director of Mannesmann, the U.S.-based, $20 billion telecom and engineering company acquired by Vodafone in 2000. While at Mannesmann, Bopp was also responsible for establishing Mannesmannâ€™s successful mobile business. He has also managed a number of telecom sector private equity funds and has advised large Eastern Europe wireless operators, among others.
â€œRoland brings tremendous business acumen and global contacts to this position,â€ said Patrick J. Hayes III, chairman of the board for BSG. â€œHis understanding of the industry and customer requirements and his experience with expanding global companies will be invaluable as we continue to build BSG into a global communications clearinghouse.â€
Mr. Bopp was recruited to Billing Services Group Limited to oversee the companyâ€™s further international development, particularly in Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Mr. Bopp will relocate to London, where the company has established a central executive function, and a full U.S.-based executive team, all of whom will continue with the business, will support him. As part of his service package, Mr. Bopp will be granted options on over 8,000,000 un-issued common shares in the capital of the company, vesting over three years and on terms comparable to those under the companyâ€™s existing share option plans. The companyâ€™s remuneration committee based on the fair market value of the companyâ€™s common shares as of today will determine the exercise price of these options.
â€œIâ€™m very pleased to be joining such an impressive organization at a strategic moment in its history,â€ said Roland Bopp. â€œAfter just one year on AIM, BSG will move up on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) next month. The companyâ€™s strong market position and recent acquisitions have established the right structure for the next phase of growth.â€