Among telecom’s many moving parts, there is strength in numbers. Sophie Reinius, Group CFO, joined Arelion in November 2021 to drive our financial strategy. We spoke with Sophie to learn more about her experience at Arelion and how her financial vision helps Arelion become more agile as we continue our global network expansion.
Q: Can you tell us about your background?
I first served as a management consultant for a telecom company so it’s fun to return to telecom and work at Arelion. I also have experience in similar technology industries. I served as Group CFO for Coromatic Group, a company that builds technical infrastructure with an emphasis on reserve power and energy-efficient generators. I have worked as CFO for a telecom network operator in Sweden and before that at Microsoft, so tech has been close at hand. These experiences assist me in contributing to Arelion’s continued growth by ensuring we have the right budget for our needs and can execute that budget.
Q: What does Arelion’s culture look like on the inside?
When I started working in telecom, Telia Carrier was known as an established operator with a long history. However, with its divestment from Telia Company, Arelion became known as an independent carrier with an entrepreneurial spirit. Our culture mixes the best of both worlds. We combine the track record and resources of a successful internet carrier with the innovative mentality of an ambitious startup.
Q: What is your day-to-day experience?
My co-workers have always been highly engaged and supportive. Everyone is proud to shape a new company that offers tangible benefits to real people. Even when network demands skyrocketed during the pandemic, my co-workers always took the time to offer support. We are IT-focused internally, building many of our solutions. As a result, much of my work includes standardizing financial processes for customized tools. I also directly interact with the board of directors and our owners to build an efficient budget. There’s lots of work behind the scenes to agree on a budget that will help Arelion grow.
Q: What are the Finance Department’s key goals? How will you achieve those goals?
My department’s goal is to support Arelion’s overall goals of growth, efficiency and change. Our growth comes from positive interactions with existing and prospective customers, so my department must streamline company budgets to enable world-class customer experiences. Our department must also facilitate Arelion’s goal to enable continued network expansions in global markets. This requires constant interaction with all departments, so they understand their short and long-term deliverables from a financial perspective.
Arelion’s Finance Department is often the liaison between company leadership, internal departments and company owners, so transparency is vital to achieving my department’s goals. In pursuing our financial goals, we must also be mindful of the past year’s inflationary pressures and changing macroeconomics. We must consider how these events affect our revenue and costs and become more dynamic to adapt to these changes. Additionally, as part of its ESG strategy, Arelion strives to empower more women leaders, so I’m proud to be a part of that cultural goal.
Q: What does the upcoming 30th anniversary for Arelion’s AS1299 network mean to you?
It allows us to reflect on our past achievements, and also helps us think about our future. Sustainability is top-of-mind from a company and ownership perspective, so I work closely with Malin Clarstedt (Group Sustainability and Quality Manager at Arelion) to ensure our financial strategy supports her work to build an energy-efficient network for our customers. My department hopes to enable the many positive effects of sustainability and organic network expansion through adept financial strategy as Arelion forges a path forward after successfully connecting the world for 30 years.
Q: Anything else?
Some people say finance is boring – I disagree! Numbers are universal, with my department often serving a supporting function for the company’s overall growth. Numbers inform our efforts to provide our global customers with high-quality connectivity services and excellent customer experiences, and I’m proud to contribute to that vision.
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