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Press release Tele2 Group Mar 11 2020, 9:00 AM CET

Progress for Tele2’s gender equality efforts in Sweden during 2019

Stockholm – In the beginning of 2019, Tele2 AB (“Tele2”) (Nasdaq Stockholm: TEL2 A and TEL2 B) set upon itself to challenge the status quo within the telecom sector by achieving a gender balanced organization in Sweden by 2023. During the year, long-term plans and efforts were initiated which resulted in 63 percent female recruits.

The Swedish IT and telecom industry employs around 30 percent women, while the overall workforce in Sweden is made up of 50 percent women and 50 percent men. Since many years, Tele2 has a dedicated focus on diversity and inclusion, but has despite that only managed a slightly better balance than the industry. To achieve a balanced Swedish organization with 50 percent women and 50 percent men, already by 2023, Tele2 launched several new initiatives in 2019. 

– When we presented the new leadership team following the merger of Tele2 and Com Hem, we were rightly criticized for its lack of gender balance. The team consisted of the best leaders from two merging companies, but it also reflected two unbalanced workforces. As the merger represented a fresh start for all of us, we decided it was time to seriously challenge ourselves and the industry, by aiming for a gender balanced organization by 2023, says Anders Nilsson, CEO and President of Tele2.

20 initiatives for change
To accomplish a balanced organization in Sweden, Tele2 must challenge old ways and address issues from multiple perspectives. 20 key initiatives that can contribute to long-term improvement have therefore been identified. Seven of these were concluded during 2019, including a new and more objective assessment process, several trainee programs, updated policies, an employee diversity council and changed adverts and language to attract a more diverse population. Most importantly, old recruitment routines were tossed out and a new strategy implemented.

– Our pipeline with potential recruits looks completely different today, with a much higher number of female candidates as well as talents from diverse backgrounds and a wide range of industries. We always hire the best candidate, regardless of gender and background, but two out of three recruits are women these days, says Therese Torstensson, Head of Talent Supply and Development at Tele2.

Far from done
Despite dedicated efforts, Tele2 is still far from achieving its goal. Following the integration of Com Hem during 2019, Tele2’s workforce was still made up of 32 percent women and 68 percent men. At the same time, the 20 initiatives aims at long-term change and some projects are still in early phases, such as unconscious bias training for all employees, improved succession planning and individual career plans.

– I am extremely proud of the improvements we have achieved in terms of recruitment. Now we need to focus on retaining our female talents and ensure they want to grow a career within Tele2. That is what will bring real change throughout the organization, including the balance of our leadership team, says Therese Torstensson.

Second among Swedish companies in Equileap ranking
In October 2019, Tele2 earned a 35th place among over 3,500 companies in Equileap’s 2019 Gender Equality Global Ranking & Report. Tele2 ranked second among all Swedish companies and third among telecom companies globally.

For more information, please contact:
Joel Ibson, Head of Corporate Communications, Phone: +46 766 26 44 00
Marcus Lindberg, Head of Investor Relations, Phone: +46 73 439 25 40

Tele2’s vision is to be the smartest telco in the world, creating a society of unlimited possibilities. Ever since Tele2 was founded in 1993, we have continued to challenge prevailing norms and dusty monopolies. Today, our award winning networks enable mobile and fixed connectivity, telephony, data network services, TV, streaming and global IoT solutions for millions of customers. We drive growth through customer satisfaction and smart combined offerings. Tele2 has been listed on Nasdaq Stockholm since 1996. In 2019, Tele2 generated revenue of SEK 28 billion and reported an underlying EBITDAaL of SEK 9 billion. For latest news and definitions of measures, please see our homepage