Rogers hires new CTO following nationwide community outage

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Rogers Communications Inc. has appointed Ron McKenzie because the telecom big’s new chief know-how officer, lower than two weeks after the corporate’s community went offline and left thousands and thousands of Canadians unable to entry web, cellular phone, or tv providers.

A Rogers spokesperson confirmed that McKenzie, previously the president of the corporate’s enterprise unit that bought telecom providers to company shoppers, would tackle the position efficient instantly, changing former CTO Jorge Fernandes.

“Rogers can affirm Jorge Fernandes might be stepping step down from his position as Chief Expertise and Info Officer. Efficient instantly, Ron McKenzie turns into Chief Expertise and Info Officer,” an organization spokesperson instructed BNN Bloomberg in an emailed assertion.

The community outage on July 8 left thousands and thousands of Rogers’ prospects unable to entry fundamental telecom providers after what the corporate later described as a “upkeep replace” that precipitated a few of its routers to malfunction.

The outage additionally led to a wide range of providers together with 9-1-1 calls and debit transactions utilizing Interac to be offline, ensuing within the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Fee calling on Rogers to behave to enhance its community reliability. Rogers has till Friday to ship an clarification to the CRTC about the reason for the outage and plans on the way it will stop future incidents.

Following the service disruption, Rogers stated it could present affected prospects with a five-day credit score, which analysts anticipate may value the corporate as a lot as $175 million. The corporate can be reportedly planning to separate its wi-fi and cable networks into two separate networks so as to add additional redundancies to stop future widespread outages.

The outage additionally reignited regulatory considerations about Rogers’ blockbuster $20-billion proposed deal to accumulate rival Shaw Communications Inc. Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, who nonetheless must log out on the deal, referred to as the community drawback “unacceptable” and ordered an investigation of the incident. The Competitors Bureau, Canada’s antitrust physique, has additionally deliberate for a judicial assessment at blocking the deal on the grounds that it’ll scale back competitors within the wi-fi market.

In response to his LinkedIn profile, McKenzie joined Rogers in Nov. 2019 following almost 11 years at Shaw the place he held various senior government positions together with serving because the Calgary-based firm’s chief working officer. Nationwide Financial institution Monetary Analyst Adam Shine stated in a report back to shoppers on Thursday that Rogers’ government change was “inevitable” following the community outage and that McKenzie is well-regarded as a “process-oriented government who seems certified for his new obligations.”

“It is also value acknowledging that his work at each firms ought to provide an excellent match in the course of the future anticipated integration of Shaw whose buy nonetheless requires regulatory approvals from the Competitors Bureau and ISED,” Shine famous.