Verizon taps Sowmyanarayan Sampath to lead Verizon Business

Sowmyanarayan Sampath will be the next EVP and CEO of Verizon Business, effective July 1.

Last month, Tami Erwin announced that she was leaving her post as CEO of Verizon Business after having spent 35 years with the company. At the time, she planned to leave at the end of the year.

Verizon said Sampath will step in starting next month, reporting to Verizon Chairman and CEO Hans Vestberg. Erwin will assume the role of strategic advisor to the CEO until the end of this year.

“Sampath brings more than two decades of experience in digital transformation and critical network infrastructure on behalf of business customers to his new role at Verizon, plus extensive knowledge of products and their role in powering enterprise growth and global security,” Vestberg said in a statement. “I am proud of the Verizon Business team’s drive and continued growth as part of our customer-facing transformation model. Given Sampath’s distinguished Verizon tenure, this will be a seamless transition and I expect him to continue the business momentum.”

Sampath joined Verizon in 2014 and currently serves as chief revenue officer for Verizon Business. According to the company, he’s been a driving force behind the organization’s commercial success, its culture of shared success and “relentless focus on customer needs.”

When he served as SVP of Business Transformation, Sampath created two of the company’s largest core initiatives: Network Transformation and OneFiber.  When he was chief product officer for the Consumer and Enterprise businesses, he led joint initiatives across networks, IoT, next-generation video and the team developing the 5G product portfolio.

He did a stint as CFO at Verizon Media Group before becoming president of Global Enterprise, where he is credited with spearheading the commercial launch of Verizon’s 5G networks and multi-access edge computing (MEC) solutions.

“I come to this role from a very diverse background, a mindset to constantly learn and a mission to lead with kindness and integrity during this critical moment of radical digitization for our customers, '' Sampath said in a statement. “The Verizon Business team is absolutely the best in the business and I am committed to ensuring we continue to build on the momentum and success we have shared together thus far. The time is now to disrupt the industry and stay laser focused on transformational outcomes for our customers and how Verizon serves their needs.”

Last month, Verizon announced it was increasing the price of some services, including for Verizon Business customers, some of whom will see a new “Economic Adjustment Charge” of $2.20 per month/line starting June 16.

Erwin served as Verizon Business CEO since 2019. At one point in her career, she was head of operations for Verizon Wireless, and she led Verizon Fios. Earlier, she was chief marketing officer of Verizon Wireless and led the business’ west region, taking it from fourth place to first place.

Last week, Verizon Business announced changes to its leadership structure, with Debika Bhattacharya named chief product officer and Iris Meijer taking over as senior vice president of Business Marketing and Revenue Operations. 

During an investor day in March, Verizon reiterated the expectation that private networks, edge compute and enterprise solutions will exceed $30 billion in addressable market opportunity by 2025 but didn’t break it down any more than that.