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Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin quits

Optus CEO Kelly Bayer Rosmarin quits

CFO Michael Venter to lead in interim period.

Kelly Bayer Rosmarin (Optus)

Kelly Bayer Rosmarin (Optus)

Credit: Optus

Kelly Bayer Rosmarin has called it quits as Optus CEO almost two weeks after the telecommunications network was plunged into a nationwide blackout.

“It’s been an honour and privilege to lead the team at Optus and to serve our customers," she said in a statement. "I am proud of the team’s many achievements and grateful for the support of the Optus team ... [and] I wish everyone and the company every success in the future.”

A former Commonwealth Bank executive, Bayer Rosmarin first joined Singtel-owned Optus in April 2020 following the departure of Allen Lew.

However, in the last year alone, the telco suffered a major cyber breach that saw the exposure of up to 9.8 million customers under the Optus banner.

Then, on 8 November, Optus' network went down across Australia in what South Australia Premier Peter Malinauskas called the single biggest telecommunications outage seen in the country.

On 17 November, Bayer Rosmarin stood before a Senate committee where she explained the root of the outage. 

There, she said that Optus' 90 Cisco PE routers hit a failsafe mechanism where each one of them independently shut down due to an upgrade on the international peering network at one of the parent company's Singtel internet exchanges (STiX) in North America.

In her exit statement, she remarked on her appearance: "I was also able to communicate Optus’ commitment to restore trust and continue to serve customers. Having now had time for some personal reflection, I have come to the decision that my resignation is in the best interest of Optus moving forward."

CFO Michael Venter will now concurrently assume the role of interim CEO as the company embarks on a search for Bayer Rosmarin's replacement.

Singtel Group CEO Yuen Kuan Moon said: “Optus appointed Kelly at the beginning of the pandemic and we acknowledge her leadership, commitment and hard work throughout what has been a challenging period and thank her for her dedication and service to Optus.

“Kelly has always led with integrity and had all stakeholders’ best interests at heart. We understand her decision and wish her the very best in her future endeavours.”

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