Verizon Said to Name Wireless Head Lowell McAdam President, COO

Verizon Wireless chief Lowell McAdam is set to be named president and chief operating officer at Verizon Communications Inc., putting him in line to succeed Chief Executive Officer Ivan Seidenberg, a source familiar with the matter said.

An official announcement could come as early as tomorrow, said the source, who couldn’t be named because the plans aren’t completed. John Killian, Verizon’s chief financial officer and another potential successor to Seidenberg, said last week he would retire to spend more time with his family.

McAdam, 56, and Killian had both been named as possible successors to Seidenberg, who turns 65 in December 2011. McAdam has run the most profitable part of Verizon for more than three years, helping the second-largest U.S. phone company grow even as it loses home phone customers.

Francis Shammo will be named chief financial officer, replacing Killian, said the source. Daniel Mead, Verizon Wireless’ operating chief, will become head of the mobile group, the source said. The Wall Street Journal reported the move today.

Marquett Smith, a Verizon spokesman, did not immediately return a call seeking comment after regular business hours.

Verizon is grappling with home-phone losses and job cuts that have led business customers to curb spending. Sales may shrink in 2010, for the first time in five years, by 1.2 percent to $106.5 billion, based on the average of analysts’ estimates in a Bloomberg survey.

Verizon Communications, which co-owns the wireless company with Vodafone Group Plc., rose 26 cents to $31.68 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading on Sept. 17. The New York-based company had risen 2.3 percent this year before today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Amy Thomson in New York at athomson6@bloomberg.net

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