AT&T Inc. said veteran executive Glenn Lurie will retire next month, the latest sign of the telephone company's efforts to retool its management team to run a more entertainment-focused business.
Mr. Lurie led the team that landed an exclusive U.S. agreement with Apple Inc. to launch the first iPhone a decade ago. The arrangement demanded heavy concessions from Cingular, later renamed AT&T to match its corporate parent, but put the wireless carrier at the front of the coming smartphone revolution.
"He has made an indelible mark on our business and our people," Chief Executive Randall Stephenson said in an email to employees.
The departure follows a broader shake-up in the telecom company's upper ranks as it positions itself to take over Time Warner Inc., a media company that owns CNN, HBO and the Warner Bros. studios.
The reorganization announced last week put longtime executive John Donovan in charge of a new communications unit to house AT&T's sprawling telecom operations, including wireless service, satellite TV and landlines. John Stankey, who previously led the unit that includes DirecTV, is poised to take the helm at a media unit that will include Time Warner should the deal close.
Mr. Donovan's new communications division plans to name Melissa Arnoldi senior executive vice president of technology and operations while Thaddeus Arroyo will remain chief executive of AT&T Business, according to a person briefed on the plans.
The new communications division's entertainment segment, which includes satellite and landline operations, will split responsibilities among three executives, the person said.
Mr. Lurie, 51 years old, spent more than two decades at AT&T and its predecessor companies. He has run its mobility and consumer operations since 2014 from Atlanta, though the company moved his position to its Dallas headquarters earlier this year, part of a broader consolidation of nonmedia operations.
AT&T announced Mr. Lurie's retirement in an email Tuesday, the first day the new management structure went into effect. Mr. Lurie couldn't immediately be reached for comment.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
August 02, 2017 10:56 ET (14:56 GMT)