Career Moves

Huge Group gets new COO

Read time 2min 50sec
Huge Group taps Andrew Openshaw for COO post.
Huge Group taps Andrew Openshaw for COO post.

Andrew (Andy) Openshaw has been appointed as COO of Huge Group, the company announced in a statement issued Thursday afternoon.

His appointment will take effect when his restraint of trade commitments to Reunert are waived or fulfilled, according to the statement.

Openshaw, says Huge Group, has spent the last ten years of his career at ECN, having initially joined the company as the chief sales and commercial officer. He is said to have been instrumental in the sale of ECN to Reunert in 2011, and its integration into the Reunert ICT segment, where he was appointed as ECN's CEO.

Under Openshaw's leadership, ECN became one of SA's leading voice and data service providers, selling in excess of 1.2 billion voice minutes a year, reads the statement. In October 2016, he assumed the CEO role of the Reunert Communication Cluster.

The new Huge Group COO holds a Bachelor of Pharmacy degree from Rhodes University. He has also completed the Advanced Executive Programme at the UNISA school of Business Leadership.

He is expected to grow Huge Group's current real estate of customers, which now exceeds 50 000, both organically and by acquisition.

James Herbst, listing founder of Huge Group and CEO, says, "Andy has the unique attribute of being able to roll up his sleeves and grow a small enterprise, as ECN was in the early days, as well as operate in a large listed company environment. I have a lot of respect for what Andy has achieved, particularly with ECN and with Reunert. The prospect of combining his capabilities and our unique position is a once in a lifetime opportunity."

"Senior appointments of this importance are a combination of competency, chemistry and mutual vision," adds Duarte da Silva, Huge Group's chairman. "I am confident Andy will make a massive contribution to our growth aspirations. We need to grow our real estate of customers aggressively, exploit the inherent network-effect, whilst actively harvesting what we already have. Andy has demonstrated that he knows how to do all of this."

Joining Huge Group represents a fantastic opportunity for me, comments Openshaw. "While I have left a large company and I am joining a smaller one, I believe the timing is perfect and success is often a function of timing. I have the entrepreneurial ability to help grow Huge Group and I can see the potential, opportunities and platform for growth at Huge Group. These were significant catalysts for me in deciding to join Huge Group.

"I can see the excitement and the momentum and I know that the investment themes that have been chosen are the right ones. Significantly, I also know that the Huge Group stakeholders are supportive of this strategy. Huge Group is positioned to go from good to great and I can't wait to be part of the success."

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