December 19, 2019 / 9:55 AM / 7 months ago

Cellcom Israel CEO Sztern to step down, join Paz Oil as CEO

JERUSALEM, Dec 19 (Reuters) - Cellcom, Israel’s largest mobile phone company, said on Thursday Chief Executive Officer Nir Sztern plans to resign in the near term after eight years in the post.

The date for Sztern stepping down has not been determined.

Sztern will become CEO of Paz Oil, Israel’s largest distributor of refined oil products, Paz said in a regulatory filing.

Paz CEO Yona Fogel will step down on Dec. 31. Israel Klepper, a vice president, was named interim CEO.

Cellcom said its board has formed a committee to search for a successor. In the meantime, Chairman Ami Erel will “actively manage the CEO transition, as well as provide executive oversight of the execution of the company’s operations and its restructuring plan during the transition period,” it said.

Under Sztern’s tenure Cellcom’s share price has slid some 85%, after Israel’s mobile phone industry was shaken up in 2012 with the entry of new operators, sparking a price war that led to steep drops in subscribers, revenue and profit for Cellcom and other incumbents.

Cellcom has looked to other sources of revenue. It launched a lower-cost internet-based TV service in 2015 that had 247,000 subscribers by the end of the third quarter, up 19.9% from a year earlier. (Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Tova Cohen)

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