Liberty Global’s purpose is building Tomorrow’s Connections Today and our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion vision is at the core of this.
We stand united to be a leader for diversity, equity and inclusion; making a difference and building connections that bring us together.
We will continue to do more, to act more, to be straight up in our approach, learn and question ourselves.
Our DE&I Council
This consists of 17 leaders from across Liberty Global who are creating transparency and developing programmes that will deliver our DE&I vision.
Co-chaired by Grace Ho and Mike Fries, the Council works with colleagues to ensure DE&I is embedded into everything we do, including the products we design, the decisions we make, the communities we operate in and the relationships we have with our customers, suppliers and shareholders. Their role is to sponsor and enable change so that everyone feels that they can bring their true selves to work, every day.
Grace was appointed Liberty Global’s first Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer in October 2020.
Passionate about people, diversity and inclusion, Grace took this role to lead the embedding of DE&I across all aspects of work at Liberty Global. She focuses on empowering all 28,000+ employees who work at Liberty Global and its operating companies to:
- achieve the company’s DE&I vision*
- play their part in creating a culture where everyone feels they can bring their whole selves to work
- feel proud of the company’s DE&I journey and its impact on external communities and stakeholders
Grace was born in Malaysia and is of Chinese and Malay heritage. As a qualified advocate and solicitor, she spent her early career in law performing pro-bono work for migrant workers in the country. The importance of fairness and equality has remained with Grace throughout her career and has shaped her approach to the complex, large scale and strategic transformation projects she has led at Liberty Global since joining the business in 2002.
Alongside Mike Fries, Liberty Global’s CEO, Grace co-chairs the company’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Council – a group of 17 leaders that champion, develop and execute DE&I strategies and programmes across the company.
Before becoming Liberty Global’s Chief DE&I Officer, Grace was the People Vice President for the company’s Technology & Innovation (T&I) function overseeing all aspects of people and organisation across the function’s international sites.
Grace sits on the Board of Directors for Women in Cable Telecommunications (WICT, a group dedicated to creating women leaders who transform the industry). She also oversees Liberty Global’s European Works Council and the Central Workers Council in The Netherlands.
* Liberty Global DE&I vision:
To demonstrate our commitment to creating an inclusive work environment and strengthening the communities we serve, we have established a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council, which will set bold goals, create transparency and develop programmes to deliver our DE&I vision.
Micha joined the Telenet Group in July 2013 and is part of Telenet’s Senior Leadership Team. Under his leadership, the mobile and fixed network upgrade programmes were launched which resulted in providing fixed internet speeds of 1 gigabit per second and best mobile performance throughout Belgium. He is also responsible for the Information Technology landscape, core platforms and the daily network related operations.
Micha is the driving force behind Telenet’s largest and biggest digital transformation programme that is bringing new ways of working for everyone in the company and improving the customer experience, powered by a new flexible and state-of-the-art IT platform. Micha’s recent achievements have been recognized publicly when receiving the 2020 CTO of the year award from Mobile Europe organization.
In his role on the Council, Micha leads the Policy workstream, focusing on aligning country policies around anti-bullying, anti-discrimination, anti-harassment and accessibility policies to promote a culture of inclusion and belonging. With a belief that change makers are critical to fix the world’s inequalities, Micha has already taken several key learnings from the Council and implemented them in Telenet’s processes, focusing on practical actions that leaders and managers can take to make a meaningful difference quickly.
Prior to Telenet Micha was part of the Liberty Global group, initially starting as Manager of the Engineering Department at UPC Netherlands. After his experience in the Netherlands operations, Micha joined Liberty Global where he was responsible for developing and launching Horizon, the Next Generation digital TV platform. Before these endeavors, he gained his first experience in the cable industry in Israel, where he was responsible, amongst other initiatives, for the development of the interactive digital video service platform, roll-out of video-on-demand architecture and managing IT billing.
Jeff is Virgin Media O2’s Chief Operating Officer. He re-joined Virgin Media in May 2017 as Managing Director of Virgin Mobile after previously spending five years as Chief Marketing Officer.
He spent two years living and working in the Netherlands as CEO of the telecoms business Tele2, overseeing the build and launch of its 4G mobile network, and also held senior roles at Callaway Golf and Honda.
Jeff is the Executive sponsor for Virgin Media O2’s ‘Belonging’ strategy – the company’s focus on diversity and inclusion. He also sits on the board of the disability equality organisation, The Valuable 500.
As part of the DE&I Council, Jeff co-leads the Council’s partnerships workstream, prioritising organisations and initiatives that will enable Liberty Global and its operating companies to enact positive change at a global and local level. Jeff has seen first-hand the engagement and impact that partnerships can deliver and is building on his experience to accelerate the work of the Council.
Sara was appointed Chief Operating Officer of All3Media* in 2015, joining the senior executive team created after the acquisition of the business by Discovery and Liberty Global.
Sara has been an advocate for the value that having a diverse team brings to business throughout her career, and has committed to advance positive change within the industry. She was a founding member of a LGBTQ+ helpline service and UK Chair of the global network group Women in Film and Television for 4 years.
Sara is personally committed to ensuring that accessibility is prioritised when it comes to decisions about how to attract, hire and retain talent. She believes that a key part of this involves creating the right culture within the business that enables equal opportunities through driving initiatives including mentoring and network opportunities .
Sara’s career to date has spanned TV, film and digital, in both business and creative roles and covers all genres. As CEO of Fremantle Media UK, she led a major restructure of the company, devising and implementing its “label” strategy. Prior to this, Sara held the post of Head of Commercial Affairs at Channel 4 and Director of Rights & Business Affairs at the BBC. Sara has also held roles including Head of Film & TV at Avalon, Head of Production at Miramax Films and Channel 4 Drama’s Co-Production Executive.
Sara sits on the Board of Governors of the National TV & Film School (NFTS) and is Chair of the Audit Committee, she is a trustee of the charity DebateMate and was until the end of 2020, Chair of the Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television (PACT). She is a barrister and a Fellow of both the Royal Television Society and the Royal Society of Arts.
* Liberty Global has a strategic investment in All3Media.
Sigrid van den Houte
Sigrid has more than 20 years’ experience in Marketing, Brand and Communications in multiple technology companies.
The focus of her current role is to define consumer needs and ensure these are reflected in future customer value propositions. She also identifies value creation opportunities for both existing connectivity and entertainment domains, as well as new opportunity areas such as smart home solutions. Sigrid challenges the product teams to ensure that what they develop is adaptable and inclusive and meets the diverse needs of their customers.
Informed by research, Sigrid’s team has deep insight into the true needs of today’s customers and a passion for ensuring that Liberty Global has a positive impact, especially on the most vulnerable.
She joined Liberty Global as Vice President Brand, Media and Communications in February 2016 where she was responsible for building a brand and communications framework that served as the foundation for new customer value propositions. In 2018, Sigrid became Chief Marketing Officer, being responsible for developing the future connectivity and entertainment customer value propositions, in collaboration with the different operating companies of the group.
Prior to this Sigrid was Chief Commercial Officer at SBS Belgium, (television channels ‘four’ and ‘five’).
Sophie has over 20 years’ legal experience in the media industry and heads up the Content Legal function at Liberty Global. She works with both Liberty Global and its Operating Companies and is responsible for all content agreements such as channel and app distribution deals, production deals and the content and media aspects of strategic projects, the design and subsequent local rollout of new products, M&A and Regulatory matters.
In her role on the DE&I Council, Sophie leads on data; driving a data-driven approach to focus DE&I efforts. This includes a new twice-yearly data collection exercise to assess representation across the Liberty Global family globally and an annual Global DE&I survey that creates an opportunity for employees to share lived experiences in their cultural landscapes, thereby helping to deliver outputs that have a beneficial impact for all employees.
Sophie is committed to creating an inclusive and equitable environment, which enables equal access to opportunity. She is inspired by the shared ambitions of the Council and is committed to delivering progress and enacting positive change.
In a previous role, she was an active part of the Women’s Network and provided coaching and mentoring to legal colleagues. She is an active member of Women in Cable Technology. She has enjoyed success in Leadership competitions and has travelled to Malawi and Lesotho in the past as part of fundraising for children’s charities.
Bill is Managing Director of External Communications and Corporate Responsibility at Liberty Global. He recently helped create a $4 million Covid-19 Response Fund for Liberty Global employees and their families.
Bill assumed responsibility for Liberty Global’s Corporate Responsibility group in 2019 and is a member of its Community Champions Council. In 2020, Bill was part of the DE&I taskforce created by CEO Mike Fries that led to the creation of the Liberty Global DE&I Council. Bill was subsequently appointed to the Council where he leads on external communication, helping Liberty Global tell its DE&I story.
Bill is a longstanding advocate for equality and fairness, and as the Legislative Director for a senior member of the House of Representatives in Washington DC in a previous role, he assumed responsibility for initiatives that provided economic empowerment for disadvantaged communities. Since leaving policy, Bill has continued to demonstrate his commitment to community engagement and, in 2015, he was the recipient of the Public Education & Business Coalition’s Cal Frazier “Investing in Education Award.”
Enrique joined Liberty Global as Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Officer in 2018. He leads the company’s Technology & Innovation (T&I) function which powers the product development, technology choices and common platforms across Liberty’s operating companies and partner markets.
Passionate about creating equal access to opportunity, Enrique focuses on how to increase the representation of women and other underrepresented groups within his team in the belief that a more diverse workforce is more stable and is better suited to serving a diverse customer base.
Enrique has over 35 years of experience of high technology, Fortune 500 global businesses, including TiVo where he was president and CEO, AT&T, Cisco, Thomson, SiriusXM and Microsoft. He is a recognized industry expert in the media, television and internet service provider sectors with a strong reputation for executing complex, large-scale, multi-billion dollar service programmes.
Bontle (she/her) is Virgin Media O2’s Director of Innovation and Development. She has been responsible for the Virgin Media/02 Pre-Merger Integration Planning Office and Agile transformation. She is the executive sponsor for the underrepresented ethnic groups community in Virgin Media O2.
Bontle is passionate about her role representing diverse and under-represented groups, using her voice to speak for black, LGBTQ, neurodivergent and women communities, helping to create corporate spaces where she and anyone who is different can thrive. She joined Liberty Global’s DE&I Council to ensure that a wide and intersectional range of lived experiences are represented and celebrated in the company’s DE&I strategy.
As an activist for gender and economic equality, Bontle is a Women in Cable Technology mentor. She also serves as the chairperson of the Board of GirlCode, a South African non-profit ICT organisation that aims to empower young girls and women through technology. Bontle is also a Board member of St Mungo’s Homeless Charity in the UK.
As a literary and education activist, Bontle is the author of several short stories and five novels for young adults, and serves on the board of the Puku Children’s Literature Foundation to bridge the digital divide for indigenous language children’s literature in Southern Africa. Bontle is also a minority shareholder of feminist trade publishing house Modjaji Books.
Saj is Managing Director of M&A and Corporate Development at Liberty Global. In his role, Saj is responsible for managing Liberty Global’s mergers and acquisitions activities, as well as corporate development initiatives. He also sits on various boards of Liberty Global investments, including Wananchi Telecom and MXLGA.
Informed by his experience of relocating from Iran to the UK at an early age, Saj is passionate about improving the representation of individuals with an ethnic minority background and fostering an environment of inclusion. He is also passionate about gender parity and ensuring that women have equal opportunities in the workplace.
Saj is working within the DE&I Council to build on existing external momentum from important moments such as Black History Month, International Women’s Day and Pride month. He is also ensuring Liberty Global is making changes internally that have a tangible and permanent impact on employees and the communities Liberty Global works within.
Prior to joining Liberty Global in 2013, Saj worked in Citi’s investment banking division focused on advising clients in the telecommunications and media sector.