Sateesh Kamath appointed Safaricom CFO, replaces John Tombleson


Safaricom has announced the appointment of Sateesh Kamath as it’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), replacing  John Tombleson who served in the position from 2011 until he was recalled by Vodafone this month over what people believe to be the leaked audit report by KPMG. Kamath assumes his position from August 1, 2016.

He joins Safaricom from Vodacom Tanzania, where he held a similar position.

(TOP: Sateesh Kamath, incoming Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Safaricom).

With over 19 years’ experience in both mature and emerging markets across Asia, Europe and Africa, Mr. Kamath has a strong background in strategic performance management and building robust operations across the telecoms, FMCG and manufacturing sectors.

Prior to his former position at Vodacom, Mr. Kamath has held senior roles for the last 12 years at both a global and local level for Vodafone operations in London, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey and Fiji. He is also non-executive Director in other group companies and investments.

Safaricom’s previous CFO Tombleson will be returning home to Vodafone New Zealand to take up a new position as the Integration Director of the recently announced merger between Vodafone New Zealand and Sky New Zealand.

During Tombleson’s tenure, the company recorded 16.3% compound Annual Revenue Growth, achieved Net Profit CAGR growth of 31.8%, and promoted Market Capital growth of 555% from US $1.1 billion to US $7.1 billion.

A senior Vodafone resource, Tombleson joined Safaricom from Vodafone Qatar, where he held the position of Acting Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer.

Tombleson first joined Vodafone in his home country of New Zealand in 2003, and has since held progressively senior financial roles in both mobile and fixed telecommunications operations.

“Mr. Kamath will join the company to steer its next phase of development as we work towards becoming ensuring our business continues its sustainable growth,” said Bob Collymore, CEO, Safaricom.

“As Mr. Tombleson’s tenure comes to its close, we are pleased that he will leave the company to return to his home town leaving behind a strengthened investor relations portfolio and strong relationships with our shareholders. As a seasoned financial executive, Mr. Tombleson leaves the company having steered the company through its most robust and fruitful years. He has been an invaluable resource to the executive team,” said Collymore.

The CFO position at Safaricom has always been reserved for Vodafone insiders. It should be remembered that Tombleson succeeded Christopher Tiffin, who served as CFO for three years beginning August 2008.

Tiffin took over from Les Baillie, another executive seconded from Vodafone, who was Safaricom’s CFO for nearly a decade until 2008.