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Australia's Telstra names insider Brady as its first woman CEO

:Telstra Corp Ltd named Vicki Brady as its new chief executive officer on Wednesday, making her the first woman to lead the Australian telecom firm, as it attempts to restructure amid persistent headwinds on its fixed-line business.

Brady, currently the chief financial officer, will take over the top job on Sept. 1 from Andrew Penn, the company said.

"There is plenty of work to be done for Vicki (Brady)," Australian telecoms analyst Paul Budde said.

"With shrinking retail margins, the internal telco competition will also continue to further heat up, with Optus and TPG both facing the same problem," Budde added.

Penn, who joined Telstra as chief financial officer in 2012 and became CEO in May 2015, "would leave a positive and enduring legacy for the transformation he has led during his time as CEO," Telstra Chairman John Mullen said.

Telstra said on Tuesday it will form a new holding company, Telstra Group Ltd, as a part of the final steps of its restructuring programme.

Brady joined Telstra in 2016 and has also held the role of group executive, consumer and small business in addition to her current position of CFO and group executive responsible for strategy.

Brady, who will be based out of Sydney, will receive a fixed remuneration of AUS$2.3 million (US$1.73 million) per annum in her new role, the statement added, which is the same as Penn's annual pay as per Telstra's 2021 Remuneration Report https://www.telstra.com.au/content/dam/tcom/about-us/investors/pdf-g/0821-TEL-AR-2021-FINAL-Interactive.pdf.

Telstra shares, which have dropped more than 5per cent so far this year, dipped as much as 1per cent in early trading on Wednesday.

(US$1 = 1.3323 Australian dollars)

(Reporting by Indranil Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber and Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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