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José María Álvarez-Pallete



Mr Álvarez-Pallete is Chairman & CEO of Telefónica S.A since April 2016 and member of the Board of Directors since July 2006.

He is executing a deep transformation of Telefónica, one of the world’s leading telecommunications service providers, into a technology company. As a firm advocate of a human-centric digitalization, he is leading the debate on the safe and ethical use of both data and Artificial Intelligence. Mr Álvarez-Pallete has called for a new digital bill of rights to ensure nobody is left behind in the fourth industrial revolution.

He joined the Telefónica Group in 1999 as a General Manager of Finance for Telefónica Internacional. Later that same year he became CFO of Telefónica S.A. In 2002 he was appointed Chairman and CEO of Telefónica Internacional. Between 2006 and 2011 he was Managing Director of Telefónica Latin America. He was appointed Chairman and CEO of Telefónica Europe in 2011, and was appointed COO of Telefónica, S.A. in 2012.

He began his professional career with Auditors Arthur Young in 1987, before joining Benito & Monjardín / Kidder, Peabody & Co. in 1988. He joined Cemex in 1995. In 1998 he was promoted to General Manager for Administration and Finance responsible for the Cemex Group´s interests in Indonesia.

He has a degree in Economics from the Complutense University of Madrid. He also studied Economics at the Free University of Brussels, in Belgium, and holds an International Management Programme from IPADE.

Among many other distinctions, in 2016 he was named Spain’s ‘Best CEO’ by Forbes magazine and, in 2019, he received the Asociación Española de Directivos’ ‘Manager of the Year’ award in the Large Corporations category and was chosen “Business Leader of the Year” by the Spain-US Chamber of Commerce.