Iraqi telecommunications company Asiacell, majority-owned by Qatar’s Ooredoo Group, has appointed Amer al-Sunna as its new chief executive officer (CEO).

He will replace Diar Ahmed, who will continue to serve as chief adviser to the chairman after he headed the company for six years.

Al-Sunna has been working for Ooredoo for the past three years. He joined as CEO of internet services provider Wi-Tribe Jordan in August 2010 and was appointed CEO of Wi-Tribe Philippines a year later. Since February this year, he served as the managing director of Asiacell Iraq.

Asiacell listed on the Iraq Stock Exchange in February following a $1.3bn initial public offering (IPO), the largest in the Iraqi bourse’s history.

The company faces competition from Zain Iraq, a subsidiary of Kuwait’s Zain Group, which is expected to launch its IPO later this year. The listing is mandatory – operators in the country are required by law to float 25 per cent of their shares.

Ooredoo increased its stake in Asiacell to 64 per cent last year, after initially buying a 40 per cent stake in 2007. The Qatari operator receives most of its growing revenues from international operations, making it the most solid performer when it comes to succesful telecoms acquisitions by regional companies.