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Former BT CEO Gavin Patterson joins Salesforce

(Image credit: Image credit: Salesforce)

Former BT CEO Gavin Patterson has been named as Salesforce chairman for EMEA, offering “strategic guidance” to businesses in the region.

Before and after his departure from BT earlier this year, Patterson had been linked with a move to the sporting world, specifically the vacant role of CEO of the Premier League. However, he will now be hoping for a smooth transition from telecoms to CRM.

EMEA is Salesforce’s fastest growing region. It reported growth of 30 per cent during Q2, while the company has invested billions of pounds in expansion programmes, creating new jobs, building new data centres and opening new offices.

Patterson Salesforce

“Salesforce is a special company with an enviable track record and phenomenal future opportunities in EMEA,” said Gavin Patterson. “I look forward to supporting this team of talented leaders as the business moves into its next phase of growth.”

Patterson was appointed the managing director of BT Consumer in 2004 and joined the BT board four years later. In 2013 he stepped up to the top job, replacing Ian Livingston who joined the House of Lords.

During his tenure, he oversaw the launch and expansion of BT Sport, the £12.5 billion acquisition of EE, and the separation of Openreach into an independent company. However investors were concerned by an accounting scandal and £530 million writedown at the Italian division of BT Global Services as well as Patterson’s relationship with regulator Ofcom.

But Salesforce is convinced the former Proctor & Gamble man can help continue growth in EMEA.

“Gavin is a highly respected leader and innovator, and we’re thrilled to welcome him to Salesforce as our EMEA Chairman,” said Salesforce co-CEOs Marc Benioff and Keith Block.

“His extensive experience in digital communications, customer engagement and systems delivery makes him a powerful addition to our EMEA team as we head into the next phase of growth and customer success in the region.”