Sprint Turns To Its Spin-Off For CEO

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Sprint Nextel has pulled new president and CEO Dan Hesse from Embarq -- the local phone operator it spun off last year -- where he had held the same position.

Hesse’s appointment, effective immediately, comes two months after the wireless company’s board ousted CEO Gary Forsee, as the wireless carrier has continued to post subscriber losses.

Among the incoming CEO’s challenges will be deciding how to proceed on the Pivot project with four cable companies.

The Sprint-operated service is offered by Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Advance/Newhouse Communications to their subscribers. Sprint – citing complexity in provisioning the service – last month froze the rollout of the service at 33 markets, short of its goal of 40 by year-end.

Hesse, 54, was Embarq’s chairman and CEO since its inception in 2006 and previously headed Sprint’s Local Telecommunications Division for one year. His 23 years at AT&T included a three-year stint as president and CEO of AT&T Wireless Services.

Meanwhile, Overland Park, Kan.-based Embarq appointed its general counsel, Tom Gerke, as interim CEO while the company searches for a permanent chief executive.

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