Finland's DNA names Leinonen CEO

Finnish operator DNA has announced the appointment of Jukka Leinonen as its new chief executive.

Leinonen was previously the company’s vice president of corporate business but has been acting chief executive since the end of August 2013, when former chief executive Riitta Tiuraniemi quit the role.

“The aim of the Board of Directors was to find a CEO who has a strong ability to map out new opportunities for DNA (Helsinki, Finland) in the midst of the upheaval in the telecommunications industry,” said Jarmo Leino, DNA’s chairman.

“Jukka Leinonen stood out among several good candidates by meeting this need particularly well,” added Leino. “Leinonen combines a clear vision of the development of DNA’s business with a long and varied experience in the telecommunications industry. He has also successfully managed his previous DNA duties.”

Leinonen said he wanted to ensure that DNA was a pioneer in providing high-quality services and promised to continue investing in the operator’s mobile network.

“I have a strong desire to lead DNA forward,” he said”. “Our operating environment is undergoing a very powerful change, which is reflected in the growing importance of content and value-added services as well as in the expansion of operators’ traditional field of business.”

The appointment of Leinonen as chief executive comes after DNA reported earnings setbacks for the three months ending September, which Leinonen blamed partly on the weak Finnish economy, saying this was causing consumers and businesses “to be more cautious with their spending”.

For the three months ending September, DNA saw profits fall to €7.5 million ($10.14 million), from €12.7 million in the year-earlier quarter, with revenues growing by 1.2% over the same period, to €191.5 million.

DNA expects sales and operating profits to fall in 2013 but insists that it remains on a “healthy” financial footing.

The operator claims to serve more than three million fixed and mobile customers in Finland.

Leinonen joined DNA in 2010, having previously worked for Nordic incumbent operator TeliaSonera (Stockholm, Sweden).