news The Federal Government has appointed iiNet founder to the board of the NBN company as a non-executive director, replacing Internode founder Simon Hackett, with the change to commence immediately.
Hackett, who founded Internode and substantially led the company through its growth into one of Australia’s ISPs, joined the NBN board in November 2013, as the dust settled on the sale of Internode to iiNet, which had emerged as a larger ISP. The Internode founder has made relatively few comments about the NBN during his period on the NBN company’s board, although he was vocal about the project beforehand.
Like Hackett, Malone is one of the most high-profile figures within Australia’s telecommunications industry, courtesy of the several decades he spent founding iiNet and then growing the company to become one of Australia’s largest ISPs. It was eventually sold to TPG late last year.
In a statement, NBN chairman Ziggy Switkowski welcomed Malone, saying: “Michael is a long-standing and respected member of the telecommunications industry. His experience will complement the diverse backgrounds and skillsets that exist on today’s NBN Board and help fill the gap created by the departure of Mr Hackett.”
“I look forward to Michael bringing new perspectives to the board table, keeping NBN focused upon our customers, valuing innovation, and successfully completing the network build ,” Switkowski added.
Malone’s experience also includes building new companies such as the cybersecurity firm, Diamond Cyber, and board appointments at a range of listed technology and media companies including SpeedCast Limited, Superloop and Seven West Media.
Malone has Bachelor of Science and a Post Graduate Diploma of Education, Mathematics, from the University of Western Australia.
The NBN company said Hackett had decided to resign from the NBN Board to focus fully on his increased responsibilities and active involvement in ASX-listed company, Redflow Limited. Mr Hackett is the largest shareholder of Redflow Limited and has recently been appointed to the position of Executive Chairman.
Switkowski acknowledged Hackett’s contribution, saying: “Simon has been a critical member of the NBN Board, bringing deep knowledge of the retail service provider business and a creative entrepreneurial mindset to our deliberations. There are few such individuals who match the specific needs of NBN so well at this stage of its development. We thank Simon for his active and valued contribution since his appointment in November 2013”.
Mr Hackett lauded the achievements of the NBN Board saying: “It is with a sense of regret that I must bid farewell to the NBN team and to my colleagues on the NBN Board. I will greatly miss the experience of being in the midst of something so very pivotal, in a space I care about so much. It has been a privilege to be a part of such an endeavour and I would jump at the chance to return if future opportunity should arise.”
I consider Malone an ideal candidate to replace Hackett on the NBN board.
Image credit: iiNet