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3 CEO to retire in June

Deputy steps up

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3 UK's CEO Bob Fuller is to step down at the end of June, the month of his sixtieth birthday.

The position will be filled by his current deputy Kevin Russell.

During his four year tenure, 3 - and the entire UK phone business - has changed radically as network operators have strived to become "communication companies".

3 bucked this trend and branded itself as a "mobile media" company instead, focusing on the delivery of multimedia content on the move.

While the competition is removing VoIP capabilities and recommending against the use of third-party instant messaging or video streaming, 3 has embraced such applications and worked with third parties to ensure a quality experience for its customers.

Deals with Orb and Slingbox, to allow customers access to their own video content, have astounded the industry which expects to make serious money selling video to customers, while the high-profile X-Series flat rate data pricing has challenged the way networks bill for their services.

But while Bob Fuller presided over the introduction of such innovative services, Kevin will face the bigger challenge of making them pay. He has a commitment to put the UK part of the company into the black during 2008, which will prove far from easy. ®

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