UPDATE 1-Vodafone CFO Halford to leave next year

Thu Oct 3, 2013 7:10am EDT

LONDON Oct 3 (Reuters) - Britain's Vodafone said on Thursday its chief financial officer Andy Halford will leave the group next year after the completion of its $130 billion deal to sell its U.S. wireless business to Verizon Communications Inc .

After almost nine years in the role Vodafone said Halford wanted to leave the firm at the end of March 2014, adding that he would be replaced by Nick Read, currently chief executive of its Africa, Middle East and Asia-Pacific region.

Read, who has also served as the group's UK CEO, will be appointed group CFO-designate on Jan. 1, 2014, joining the board in April, Vodafone said.

Halford joined the firm in 1999 and was named CFO of Verizon Wireless - Vodafone's US joint venture with Verizon Communications Inc. - in 2002. He was appointed to the Vodafone board as group CFO in 2005.

Verizon agreed in September to pay $130 billion to buy Vodafone's 45 percent stake in its U.S. wireless business, signing history's third largest corporate deal to bring an end to an often tense 14-year marriage.

Read will be replaced in the regional role by Serpil Timuray on Jan. 1.

Shares in Vodafone were up 1.4 percent to 221.90 pence at 1057 GMT.

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