As plain Ian Livingston, he took over BT when it was struggling in 2008, slashed costs and turned around its troubled global services arm.
The Scot's £1 billion drive to take on dominant BSkyB in televised sports has resulted in BT's consumer arm reporting its strongest revenue growth for a decade as the company pulled in two million customers for its 13 week-old sports offering, which includes Scottish Premier League football.
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Lord Livingston, a director of Celtic Football Club, quit BT last month and became a peer ahead of his appointment as trade and investment minister in December.
His successor Gavin Patterson, who has family roots in Echline, South Queensferry, said: "He achieved his goal, which was to create a better business with a better future."
Lord Livingston "really got the business back in shape", Mr Patterson said, while he also oversaw investments such as fibre optic broadband
"The basic strategy remains the same," Mr Patterson said of his approach, "but I think the emphasis will increasingly move to how do we drive these investments, how do we get them driving the top line of the business."
Group revenue was flat at £4.5bn in the second quarter of BT's financial year to September 30. This is the first time it has not contracted in more than four years.
Adjusted profit before tax, up 2% to £609 million, was ahead of forecasts. But on a reported basis pre-tax earnings fell 10% to £499m, due to movements in its pension scheme valuation, the impact of restructuring costs and the costs of launching BT Sport.
BT said it took 93% of all the people signing up for broadband in the three months to September and saw the lowest number of customers giving up landlines for five years. The rise of 4% in its consumer revenues was the best growth in a decade, it said.
Currently, most households taking out its sports service are existing customers.
But it is confident a strong set of English football fixtures due to be screened over Christmas will boost subscriber numbers.
BT Sports's average audience for Scottish football matches is 71,000, slightly less than for those shown on ESPN last season. The audience is half that established broadcaster Sky Sports has attracted to its Scottish matches.
BT also noted many games have had Saturday lunchtime kick-offs and clashed with high-profile English matches it was screening.
The telecoms giant complained its ability to take on BSkyB is hampered by regulations that allow companies to seek to win back television customers intending to defect to rivals, a practice banned for broadband.
"This is a single market now and the regulation has to keep up with it," Mr Patterson said.
Richard Hunter of Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers said: "BT remains a company in transition but it already has extremely firm foundations in place for further progress."
BT declared an interim dividend of 3.4p, up 13% on last year, to be paid on February 3.
Its shares closed up 7.5p or 2% at 377p.