International network managed services provider Claranet has announced the appointment of Andy Wilton as its new CIO.

The move, says the company, comes at a time of rapid development and strategic growth for the firm in the UK and across Europe, with continued investment in its technology platforms and business systems.

As head of Claranet’s technology group, Wilton will be responsible for existing IT systems, infrastructure and platforms, together with technology and service integration of newly acquired businesses.

His appointment marks the eve of the first anniversary of Claranet’s acquisition of Star (in the UK) and Typhon (in France), and the company’s establishment as a leading player in Western Europe for providing data hosting and managed services to the mid-market.

Wilton has qualifications in physics and computer science, having studied at the University of Nottingham and later Aston University where he received his PhD.

His professional career includes senior positions at 3Com, Siemens Network Systems (now part of KCom), and more recently seven years as IT director of 2e2 - a data hosting company which went bankrupt this year, leaving customers struggling to get access to their data and facing the prospect of their hosted websites being taken down.

Eventually, various other suppliers stepped in to retrieve the situation by buying bits and pieces of the 2e2 group.

Charles Nasser, CEO of Claranet, said: "Since our acquisition last year we have taken the time to create a fully integrated business that takes an expanded range of services to market.

"Andy’s skill in handling company integration and experience in managing cloud hosting environments made him an ideal choice to join our team, helping to consolidate our share of market as a leading MSP (managed service provider) in Europe."

Wilton said: “Claranet’s extended period of growth and innovation makes this a very exciting time to join the business. The big challenge for cloud providers is how to respond to the rapid changes in market demands in what is still a comparatively immature landscape.

"Ensuring a fully integrated service that is flexible to every customer's need is no simple task."