Mitel Announces Mary T. McDowell as New President & CEO

Ottawa October 07, 2019 (Business Wire)

• Experienced technology executive Mary T. McDowell appointed to accelerate Mitel’s strategy of providing every customer with a seamless path to the cloud communications solution of their choice.
• CEO Rich McBee departs after transforming Mitel into a leading global provider of unified communications during nearly a decade of leadership.

Mitel, a global leader in business communications, today announced the appointment of Mary T. McDowell as president and chief executive officer. McDowell brings an intimate understanding of the communications and technology markets and a strong track record of driving growth for global organizations. Most recently, McDowell was CEO and board member for Polycom, Inc., where she led Polycom through a strategic operating model transformation resulting in revenue growth and a successful sale to Plantronics in 2018.

Prior to Polycom, McDowell was executive vice president at Nokia, where she was in charge of the company’s $15 billion global feature phone business and oversaw Nokia’s developer and app store organization. She also previously held senior positions at Compaq Computer and Hewlett Packard. McDowell currently serves as a board member for multinational software company Autodesk, Inc. and UK-based Informa, plc. a multinational events and publishing company. She is also a board member for the Committee of 200, a nonprofit dedicated to the advancement of women in business.

McBee has accepted a new executive role and departs Mitel after leading the company through a period of strategic transformation, including driving Mitel’s industry consolidation strategy, completing more than a dozen acquisitions and strategic transactions. During his tenure as CEO, Mitel evolved from a premises-based PBX pioneer to a leading provider of cloud communications.


“Mitel has a storied history of innovation, a trusted brand and a unique ability to meet customers wherever they are on their path to the cloud,” said Mitel’s new President and CEO, Mary T. McDowell. “I’m excited about the opportunities that lie ahead and eager to work closely with Mitel’s experienced team and network of partners to continue delivering solutions that make communications and collaboration more seamless for our customers.”

“I’m extremely proud of what the Mitel team accomplished in our time together through a rare combination of passion, dedication and innovation,” said outgoing Mitel President and CEO, Rich McBee. “Mitel is well-positioned to accelerate the market transition to cloud and Mary has the deep technology expertise needed to lead the company. The future is bright for Mitel and I look forward to watching its continued success.”

“We thank Rich for his leadership at Mitel. He has played a crucial role in transforming Mitel and we wish him the best in his future endeavors. We are committed to Mitel’s success and look forward to partnering with Mary to continue the company’s strategy of providing a clear and seamless path for every business to move to the cloud,” said Andrew Frey, Mitel board member and partner at Searchlight Capital Partners. “Mary’s proven operating experience and success in guiding technology companies through market transitions make her an ideal choice to guide Mitel in this next chapter.”

Additional Facts
• Mitel is trusted by more than 70 million users each day to provide an exceptional communications and collaboration experience.
• Mitel is a leading provider of cloud communications, enabling 4.7 million users, including 1.4 million UCaaS customers (Source: Synergy Research Group).
• Mitel ranks highest in growth on Frost & Sullivan RADAR for Hosted IP Telephony & UCaaS.

About Searchlight
Searchlight is a global private investment firm with over $7 billion in assets under management and offices in New York, London and Toronto. Searchlight seeks to invest in businesses where its long-term capital and strategic support accelerate value creation for all stakeholders. For more information, please visit

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