Graham Payne

Senior Advisor - Executive Chairman, FreshWave

Graham Payne is a Senior Advisor to Digital Colony and serves as the Executive Chairman of The FreshWave Group (“FreshWave”).

In 2014, Mr. Payne co-founded Opencell, the UK’s first carrier-approved indoor mobile signal service provider and the first to be able to deliver in-building coverage from all four mobile network operators using small cells. In November 2018, Digital Colony acquired Opencell and merged it with Stratto, a specialist in-building DAS provider. Mr. Payne led the merged business, strattoOpencell, as Chief Executive Officer. He guided the acquisitions of tower company Spyder Facilities Ltd, as well as leading small cell outdoor and radio service provider iWireless Solutions, before transitioning to the role of FreshWave’s Executive Chairman in the beginning of 2020.

Mr. Payne has long been at the heart of the mobile industry, having been involved in the inception of GSM in the 1990’s. He worked as the Planning and Deployment Director for T-Mobile in the UK and Rollout Manager for the T-Mobile International.

In 2007, Mr. Payne took a leading role in negotiating the largest network consolidation agreement in the world at that time. Following this successful negotiation, he was asked to establish and become Managing Director of MBNL, the joint venture between EE and Three. The consolidation was successfully consummated in October 2010 and continues to deliver significant benefits to its shareholders today. After leaving MBNL in 2014, Mr. Payne provided executive consultancy on network sharing and radio network projects, including executive level support to Vodafone on the Beacon project with Telefonica and CTIL, which helped transform delivery and enable large scale 4G rollout for both.

Mr. Payne serves on the Board of Directors of FreshWave and is a valued adviser to numerous global mobile connectivity groups.