Vittorio Colao

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Vittorio Colao
Vittorio Colao.jpg
Born (1961-10-03) 3 October 1961 (age 58)
EducationBocconi University
Harvard University
Known forOmnitel Pronto Italia COO
RCS MediaGroup CEO
Vodafone CEO
TitleFormer CEO, Vodafone
TermJuly 2008 - October 2018
PredecessorArun Sarin
SuccessorNick Read
Spouse(s)Married 1992

Vittorio Amedeo Colao (born 3 October 1961) is an Italian businessman & former chief executive officer at Vodafone Group.[2]

Early life[edit]

The son of an officer in the Carabinieri, he was born in Brescia.[3] He received a business degree from Bocconi University and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.[4]


He started his career at investment bank Morgan Stanley in London.[5] He joined the Milan office of McKinsey & Co in 1986, where as a Partner he worked on media, telecommunications and industrial goods sectors and was responsible for office recruitment.[6]

In 1996 he joined Omnitel Pronto Italia, rising to chief operating officer before its take over to become Vodafone Italy. He became regional CEO, Southern Europe in 2001 and joined the main board in 2002. After missing out on the CEO's job, taken by his friend Arun Sarin, and having a purchase of a Bulgarian mobile company blocked, he left Vodafone for Italian publishing company RCS MediaGroup, where he became CEO in July 2004.[5][6]

After shareholder criticism of the publishing group's strategy and governance, he resigned from RCS MediaGroup following the company's board meeting in September,[7] rejoining Vodafone in October 2006 as CEO Europe and succeeding Sir Julian Horn-Smith as deputy CEO.[8]

Commenting to the Italian press in 2007 that he had no interest in taking the CEO's job at Telecom Italia,[9] Colao succeeded Vodafone CEO Arun Sarin on 29 July 2008.[2]

In 2015, he was appointed as a non-executive director of Unilever.[10]

In May 2018, he announced that he would step down as Vodafone CEO effective October 2018, and will be succeeded by the finance director Nick Read.[11]

In April 2020, he is appointed by the Italian government led by Giuseppe Conte, as the leader of a special task force to handle the 'Phase 2' of the emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Married in 1992, his wife and two children reside with him in South Kensington, Greater London [13]. Colao is a reserve officer in the Carabinieri.[3][5]


  1. ^ "Executive Profile: Vittorio A. Colao". Bloomberg. Retrieved 26 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Vodafone Announces New Chief Executive". Vodafone. 2008-05-27. Retrieved 2008-05-27..
  3. ^ a b Wearden, Graeme (2008-05-27). "Vittorio Colao: from Brescia to the top of Vodafone". The Guardian. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  4. ^ "Vittorio Colao". 1 December 2014. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. ^ a b c Lindsay, Robert (2008-05-27). "Who is Colao?". The Times. London. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  6. ^ a b "Vittorio Colao (86-96 MIL) New CEO of RCS MediaGroup". McKinsey & Co. 2004-06-23. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  7. ^ "RCS CEO resigns after shareholder criticisms". Forbes/AFX News. 2006-07-21. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  8. ^ "Vodafone Names Vittorio Colao European Region Ceo". Dow Jones. 2006-09-06. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  9. ^ Blackden, Richard (2008-05-27). "Vittorio Colao fends off Vodafone competition". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  10. ^ "Vittorio Colao". Unilever global company website. Retrieved 2017-03-23.[additional citation(s) needed]
  11. ^ "Vodafone boss Vittorio Colao to step down". BBC News. Retrieved 2018-05-16.
  12. ^ Zampano, Giada (2020-04-11). "Italy gov't extends coronavirus lockdown until May 3". Anadalu Agency. Retrieved 2020-04-11.
  13. ^ The MT Interview: Vittorio Colao of Vodafone,

External links[edit]