KPN ditches Dominique Leroy

Former Proximus CEO Dominique Leroy is not joining Dutch rival KPN after all.  The Dutch telecom giant has withdrawn her appointment as new CEO “given the uncertainty around the person of Ms Leroy”.  The former chief exec is under investigation for insider dealing.

Dominique Leroy announced her move to KPN at the beginning of the month.  The news impacted like a bombshell given her intimate knowledge of Proximus and fears KPN could now benefit from this knowledge in launching an onslaught on the Belgian market. It also emerged that Ms Leroy had sold a packet of Proximus shares worth 285,000 euros last month.  Financial watchdog FSMA immediately launched an investigation to establish whether there was any insider dealing.

Ms Leroy denies all allegations claiming she hadn’t decided to quit Proximus when she made the sale.  A judicial investigation into the matter is also underway, a matter that could take some considerable time. If found guilty, Ms Leroy risks 4 years in jail.

KPN notes that it’s above all worried about the length of any judicial investigation and the uncertainty that this provokes, which “isn’t in the interest of shareholders”. “This is why we have decided to scrap her appointment as CEO” KPN says.