Vodafone on Tuesday posted net profit of 2.4 billion euros ($2.9 billion) in the 12 months to the end of March, which compared with a loss after tax of 6.3 billion euros in 2016/17, the group said in a statement.
Colao indicated that the price war had been bruising for Vodafone. Margherita Della Valle, now deputy CFO, will succeed Read as CFO.
"The overall improvement in Vodafone's fortunes over the last 10 years is less evident in the United Kingdom, the company's worst major European market, albeit that some of this reflects an inherently more competitive mobile market with four strong players", he added.
The announcement about the departure of CEO of Vodafone later this year has hit the shares in the world's second largest mobile operator.
In 1996, Colao joined Omnitel Pronto Italia, which subsequently became Vodafone Italy, and he was appointed Chief Executive in 1999.
Vodafone India, which is merging with Idea Cellular, expects the process to be completed by June, possibly making the latest results the last on standalone basis.
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Total revenue fell 2.2% €46.6bn, reflecting foreign exchange headwinds and the negative impact from the deconsolidation of Vodafone Netherlands following the creation of the VodafoneZiggo joint venture with Liberty Global.
Vodafone said that over the last ten years, he has overseen a strategic reshaping of the group, exiting minority shareholding to focus on controlled and co-controlled assets while growing mobile customer numbers from 269 million to 536 million (plus 19.7 million broadband customers) over 25 countries, including significant businesses in India, Egypt, Turkey and across Africa, Vodafone said. He joined Vodafone in 2001 as Vodafone UK Finance Director before being appointed Vodafone UK Chief Commercial Officer then Vodafone UK CEO.
Read attained his present post in 2014 following a successful spell at the group's emerging markets division spanning Africa, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.
Vodafone management team has selected Nick Read for the top position because of his experience in managing business.
Vodafone Chairman Gerard Kleisterlee thanked Colao, describing him as "a strategic visionary".
"Nick has been the co-architect of the Group's strategy together with Vittorio, combining extensive worldwide operational and commercial leadership with world-class financial acumen", Gerard Kleisterlee, Chairman of Vodagone Group Plc, said in a statement.
Colao will be replaced by Vodafone's finance director since 2014, Nick Read whose wealth of worldwide experience made him a likely candidate for the position.