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View Full Version : Shareholder revolt looms at VA


juliusg
22nd Jun 2018, 01:38
This just in: Appears Etihad have someone in mind to buy some of their shares AND become the mover in a bid to replace J.B. with John Thomas (who was boned last year). And thus effect CHANGES.

From The Australian:
Virgin Australia is expected to face an investor revolt led by a new activist shareholder who could emerge with the aim of installing a former executive as the airline’s new boss. Etihad’s relatively new chief financial officer, Mark Powers, was reportedly in Australia last week to hold meetings ahead of a decision by the airline to sell down a chunk of its stock. Dealmakers thought a transaction would have occurred by now and expect it could happen imminently.

DataRoom understands former Virgin executive John Thomas could be put forward as chief executive by a new activist investor with the backing of most of the airline’s current investors. On the current registry, Etihad holds nearly 21 per cent, followed by Singapore Airlines with 20.03 per cent, China’s Nanshan Group which holds 20.02 per cent and HNA Group with 19.85 per cent. The airline’s founder, Richard Branson, retains 10.02 per cent. The future of Etihad’s stake has been under question for the past few months after the airline flagged that its investment with Virgin was not in line with the strategy put in place by chief executive Peter Baumgartner. Abu Dhabi’s Etihad has recently been reviewing its strategy. The carrier made a $US1.87 billion net loss for the 2016 financial year, including taking a hit from poor performances by Italy’s Alitalia and Germany’s Air Berlin, which is no longer flying. It’s expected that an activist investor could take a 5 per cent stake in the airline and then start lobbying for major board and management changes.

The new investor would be likely to gain the support of the Singapore group, Etihad and Branson. The trio is understood to be keen for change to be implemented at the airline. The outlook from the Chinese investors is believed to be difficult to judge and their opinion on the prospect for change has been tough to gauge by onlookers.

Given John Borghetti has flagged that he will leave Virgin in 2020, its expected that putting a new chief executive in place earlier would be made a priority. The proposition for Thomas to return to Virgin is understood to be supported by the company’s major shareholders after his brief stint, which ended last year. At the time, Thomas was running Virgin’s domestic and international businesses and was considered the second in charge. However, he lasted just a year before he left in June. Virgin said at the time that Thomas was not the “right fit’’ but he is believed to have the backing of the shareholders. For the half*year to December 31, Virgin made a statutory after*tax profit of $4.4m and the net loss attributable to owners was $10.3m. On the carrier’s preferred measure, underlying profit, it had its best result in a decade at $102.5m.

Icarus2001
22nd Jun 2018, 02:30
The link is behind a paywall.

bobyyy1
22nd Jun 2018, 03:43
JT’s return would be a godsend for VA. He has a proven track record (look at what he did in the USA) and knows how to run a business. He already knows the ins and outs of the business.

In the short stint he had at va he increased the pilot group engagement and created the success story that is economy x. His only fault was that he was putting upper management in their place by informing them of their short comings. They obviously referred to this as him ‘not being the right fit’.

I for one look forward to his return as the ceo of the group.

Servo
22nd Jun 2018, 03:59
Not just the support of the shareholders but nearly EVERY staff member at Virgin Australia. Actually made some money for the company with his idea's. Actively listened as well.

I personally thought JB was the messiah when he started. Look how that turned out. Hopefully John Thomas will get the CEO job and we can all move forward.

wheels_down
22nd Jun 2018, 04:00
He has a proven track record (look at what he did in the USA) and knows how to run a business. He
Careful. JT has been a consultant his entire career. He has not run any successful business which is why I was hoping you can tell us which billon dollar companies these are?

Highly unlikely to appoint someone lacking the experience running a $5b+ company. He just has never done it before. Virgin was his first real executive job.

Servo
22nd Jun 2018, 04:03
And JB started in the mail room. So what. Warrent Buffet had never been a CEO either, look at him now.

wheels_down
22nd Jun 2018, 04:12
And JB started in the mail room. So what. Warrent Buffet had never been a CEO either, look at him now.
Your missing the point. Did he stay in the mail room until his Virgin appointment?

Servo
22nd Jun 2018, 06:22
Being a yes man and "working" your way up a pole doesnt make you a good CEO either. I respectfully think you are missing the point. JB's reign has not been stellar.

But this is not about JB anymore.

Snakecharma
22nd Jun 2018, 06:52
An indication of the worth of a senior manager is whether they shoot the messenger when they get told news they don’t want to hear. A poor manager will punish those that deliver bad news.

And the indication of the worth of a less senior manager is their willingress to provide information the boss needs to hear, even though they know it will result in grief. A good one will provide fearless advice to their boss and not tailor the info to save themselves. A poor one filters the bad news out and only delivers info that won’t get them yelled at.

i will leave it to others to decide if they have one of the first and many of the second.

The Bullwinkle
22nd Jun 2018, 15:26
Your missing the point. Did he stay in the mail room until his Virgin appointment?
He should have stayed there, FULLSTOP!
JT has been the only executive in recent years that had any idea how to run an airline properly and if he does come back, I hope it happens before the company becomes a total train wreck.
There’s a lot of damage to be undone!

PoppaJo
22nd Jun 2018, 15:41
The info I got was JT was removed by both JB and EB.

Last time I checked she is still the boss, so it’s all really just media dribble at this time.

I’d say highly unlikely to see JT under EB’s reign.

Interceptheading
22nd Jun 2018, 21:38
Clearly EB is 95% of the problem and should be removed from the board.

romeocharlie
22nd Jun 2018, 22:50
Clearly EB is 95% of the problem and should be removed from the board.

Understatement of the year. Shouldn't be allowed to run a lemonade stand.

Roj approved
23rd Jun 2018, 00:48
Anyone know what Rob Fyfe is doing these days?
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob_Fyfe

Rabbitwear
23rd Jun 2018, 01:27
Time to dust off the old CV , again !

Buster Hyman
23rd Jun 2018, 07:13
I thought it was common knowledge that Etihad was selling 5% to SQ?

Snakecharma
23rd Jun 2018, 08:14
Didn’t think sq or any of the major shareholders could buy more outside of the creep provisions without launching a full takeover bid.

someone wise in the ways of the asx will be able to correct me :)

Chris2303
23rd Jun 2018, 09:44
Anyone know what Rob Fyfe is doing these days?
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rob_Fyfe

Fyfe has already said that he would not help a company that was a competitor to Air NZ.

Besides he is busy organising a hole on the South Island's West Coast

coaldemon
23rd Jun 2018, 10:01
Charma is correct. If they (or any one of them) buy 5% on top of their 20% then they will have to launch a formal takeover. Can't see any of the incumbents doing that as it stands. They will all sit on the creep provisions. Will be interesting to see who the 5 % investor is as it would have to be someone of influence to get three of the shareholders to agree to a new CEO. Interesting times in Sydney for the next few months. Let the manoeuvring begin (well that has already started apparently)

AerialPerspective
23rd Jun 2018, 10:24
Your missing the point. Did he stay in the mail room until his Virgin appointment?

No, he rose through the ranks by being a time server in the right place at the right time, judging by his stint at VA it would seem it had nothing to do with talent... longevity at QF through advantageous circumstances (when a lot of talent departed after Strong took over) painted the picture of him being some sort of genius when he wasn’t... do people really believe the line that he was responsible for QF’s market performance... nothing to do with their major competitor going broke or with Dixon’s strategy. The results show he was never up to the job and now the chickens are coming home to roost.

TBM-Legend
23rd Jun 2018, 11:59
No longer an Australian airline. They should be made to take the Australian flag off their aircraft...

Ken Borough
23rd Jun 2018, 12:07
No longer an Australian airline. They should be made to take the Australian flag off their aircraft...

:D. :D

And stop the pretence that the international arm is an Australian carrier. It's a ludicrous but apparently legal farce.

virginexcess
23rd Jun 2018, 13:59
Article implies etihad may sell shares. If investor has SQ, Branson and Etihad aligned, that is more than 50% of shares. Doesn’t matter what EB thinks or wants, she will be irrelevant. Boards are in place to represent shareholders, not tell them what they can and can’t do.if a majority of shares want a particular outcome then the board would be powerless to stop them. The board can tell the CEO what to do ( theoretically) but it cant tell the shareholders what they should do.

if this shareholder revolt is successful, the current board is history. It cannot be a coincidence that this story surfaces a week after JB effectively resigns. I’m betting there is an in principle deal in place and JB is a dead man walking.

The Bullwinkle
23rd Jun 2018, 14:29
I’m betting there is an in principle deal in place and JB is a dead man walking.
I hope you’re right!
It just annoys me that if he walks out the door early, his payout will probably be more than enough to buy a dozen McLaren’s.

hoss
23rd Jun 2018, 23:57
JB and Elizabeth Who - haven’t they already left.

5% - probably Aeroflot this time.

Australian flag - didn’t notice one on the last walk around.

ps. Is the virgin pilot forum offline? I can’t login.

SHVC
23rd Jun 2018, 23:58
You all have it wrong, it will be Merrin McArthur!

No Idea Either
24th Jun 2018, 00:03
Hoss

Offline for an upgrade I believe.

The Bullwinkle
24th Jun 2018, 00:22
Hoss

Offline for an upgrade I believe.
Could just be a conspiracy theory, but it’s interesting that the Virgin Pilot website went offline moments before the JT story was published in The Australian, and just as the push for JT to return was gathering momentum on that site.
Perhaps there is some truth in the rumour that the website is now being run by management.

TBM-Legend
24th Jun 2018, 00:34
Take a look at the 100% Virgin Oz Tiger Airlines clunkers..

virginexcess
24th Jun 2018, 00:51
You all have it wrong, it will be Merrin McArthur!
if the revolt fails, I reckon you’ll be right. You’d be brave to bet against Borghetti getting his way. To me he makes Macchiavelli look like an amateur.

hoss
24th Jun 2018, 03:26
Fair point TBM, I think that was after they cut the cake then played ‘pick a flag out of the hat’ up at the village. Pure coincidence.

Snakecharma
24th Jun 2018, 03:41
SHVC, I reckon it will be a “sharp” pick whomever gets the gig.

Buster Hyman
24th Jun 2018, 04:47
Australian flag - didn’t notice one on the last walk around.
Need to pay more attention I reckon... :p

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/www.gmforum.com-vbulletin/625x417/cpl_ndf_6741_37b81629283edf2cc7e841c5b9bb15057fbd3003.jpg

havick
24th Jun 2018, 04:49
Need to pay more attention I reckon... :p

https://cimg1.ibsrv.net/gimg/www.gmforum.com-vbulletin/625x417/cpl_ndf_6741_37b81629283edf2cc7e841c5b9bb15057fbd3003.jpg

mic drop..

JPJP
24th Jun 2018, 05:27
mic drop..

Ehh. A real Mic drop would be the appearance of the letter ‘t’ - inserted between the ‘a’ and ‘c’ on the day after JB departs the pattern with another bag full of gold.

:suspect:

hoss
24th Jun 2018, 05:32
Wrong colours.... anyway, I was admiring her figure and making sure the mud wasps weren’t looking for a new home ;)

Nothings worse than a bust covered in wasps!

On Guard
24th Jun 2018, 07:07
Could someone start a petition to the board for JT. Sounds like 90% of the staff want it. Would we dare put are names in it and face JBs wrath?

Servo
24th Jun 2018, 08:14
Could someone start a petition to the board for JT. Sounds like 90% of the staff want it. Would we dare put are names in it and face JBs wrath?

What wrath? He is leaving. Made his mark, made some money and going.

There are idea's being floated with regards to JT. Hopefully they come to fruition.

SHVC
24th Jun 2018, 08:50
Has JT ever been at the helm of a large company? to my knowledge he has only ever been a consultant. big difference between the two!

PoppaJo
24th Jun 2018, 10:32
I think that was mentioned earlier in this thread in regards to lack of expertise.

Either way way you can forget JT as long as EB is there. She ain’t gonna hire him when she fired him!

On Guard
24th Jun 2018, 10:43
I don’t think EB gets anymore say than other board members, if she is outvoted by the board/shareholders it’s game on. Unfortunately this is what happened when Luxon tried to oust JB, lost the vote- just.

The Bullwinkle
24th Jun 2018, 14:01
Has JT ever been at the helm of a large company? to my knowledge he has only ever been a consultant. big difference between the two!
Had JB ever been at the helm of a large company before Virgin? No!
JT held a comparable position at Virgin to JB’s position at QANTAS.
The big difference was JT understood how an airline actually operates. JB still doesn’t have a clue.
You’d have to search pretty hard to find any frontline staff who can’t wait for JB to go.
Conversely, almost all of the actual workers at Virgin are hoping that JT will return.
Staff engagement plays a major role in a successful business and sadly, there has been very little staff engagement under the current executive management.
Bring back JT and “Make Virgin Great Again”

InZed
24th Jun 2018, 23:45
JT will be an excellent replacement for JB.

The argument that he’s under-qualified is CLEARLY IRRELEVANT - as the Virgin Australia Board appointed him to second-in-charge Group Executive in the first place!

You can’t make a sh*t stirring claim that he doesn’t have what it takes when the Board clearly thought he had the goods 18 months ago or they wouldn’t have given him the job!

Now not only does 90% of the staff seem to think he’s qualified, so does over 50% of the shareholders! Let our lord and saviour JT take the reigns!

AerialPerspective
25th Jun 2018, 03:03
Had JB ever been at the helm of a large company before Virgin? No!
JT held a comparable position at Virgin to JB’s position at QANTAS.
The big difference was JT understood how an airline actually operates. JB still doesn’t have a clue.
You’d have to search pretty hard to find any frontline staff who can’t wait for JB to go.
Conversely, almost all of the actual workers at Virgin are hoping that JT will return.
Staff engagement plays a major role in a successful business and sadly, there has been very little staff engagement under the current executive management.
Bring back JT and “Make Virgin Great Again”

I thought the rumor was that he got the chop, amongst other things, because he agreed with Pilots that it was illogical that they not ride in business class positioning to effect the operation of an aircraft because of ‘product dilution’ but that the product isn’t affected by the image of the most visible company employee sitting up there... JB lost me when he perpetrated that bit of narcissistic BS that his a/se was ok to be in business class but not a Pilot who’s next duty is up the front flying 250-300 people back across the country... that just fails the logic test and renders him a narcissist who thinks his —— doesn’t stink... with that, he can’t be a leader in any sense baecause that alone makes him a pompous idiot. It’s the classic ‘I am’ but ‘you’re not’ statement. Well, tell you what, hold a gathering of him and Pilots and I wouldn’t even bother talking to him... if memory serves he was a self important sales ****** at QF too... don’t know how the ‘messiah’ tag got attached to him... never stood out at any time.
The only decent senior exec I think VA had in the last 5 years was the former CIO. Don’t know JT but if the rumor is true, he’s probably worth a shot.
Really the whole thing has got to the point where a trained chimpanzee could do better. The comments on here, many of them, just reinforce the impression by the people the MRB has pushed forward that he is one of these image over substance people... used to call people like that ‘mud guard’... all shiny on top and a lot of rubbish underneath.

AerialPerspective
25th Jun 2018, 03:08
JT will be an excellent replacement for JB.

The argument that he’s under-qualified is CLEARLY IRRELEVANT - as the Virgin Australia Board appointed him to second-in-charge Group Executive in the first place!

You can’t make a sh*t stirring claim that he doesn’t have what it takes when the Board clearly thought he had the goods 18 months ago or they wouldn’t have given him the job!

Now not only does 90% of the staff seem to think he’s qualified, so does over 50% of the shareholders! Let our lord and saviour JT take the reigns!

the benefit of the backing of 90% of the people he’ll be leading shouldn’t be discounted... even if he’s moderately competent he’ll be a genius compared to the current lot and off to a flying start if he’s already got people on side. Getting people to follow, isn’t that the very definition of a leader??? What else is there...

virginexcess
25th Jun 2018, 03:36
I've met JT several times and I'm definitely a supporter, but I am also cognisant of the fact that everyone (including me) was behind JB when he arrived as well. It's very easy to say what you would do when you don't have the authority to do it, (and let me say at the outset, pilots are the world champions in that area), but until you actually have the reins, it's all speculation. My support for JT stems from the fact that he at least had some ideas (JB seems to have been bereft of them since he decided to order the 330's) and the one that he was allowed to implement (economy X) has been a huge success, so on that basis I figure we can't be any worse off and I hope the shareholders let him have a roll of the dice.

Don't forget also that JT implemented the "Champions of Better" slogan and he may even have coined the "uptimism" crap. I'm not a big fan of stupid words and slogans. I prefer policy and vision.

TBM-Legend
25th Jun 2018, 04:39
Don't forget business is warfare...

Let's look at the share price as an indication of success. Remember in WW1 the phrase was coined....'lions led by donkeys' rings true...

Servo
27th Jun 2018, 03:50
Is the Virgin Pilots forum still down for others?

Biatch
27th Jun 2018, 04:05
Yep.............

The Bullwinkle
27th Jun 2018, 05:52
Is the Virgin Pilots forum still down for others?
Yes. Quite suspicious if you ask me!

mattyj
27th Jun 2018, 06:03
This is the age of words and slogans though..?

Ron_Burgandy
28th Jun 2018, 10:53
Can anyone fill me on the status of the Virgin Pilot forum. Too much of a coincidence for the site to be shutdown with the current topics raised and recent media talk....

However, I thought it was run by the pilot group? Surely an explanation is needed.

Why am I not surprised.....

PoppaJo
28th Jun 2018, 15:46
In Today’s Australian

EB is conducting the search it seems! Oh and there is no culture problem too.

Virgin Australia chairman Elizabeth Bryan is moving swiftly to replace outgoing chief executive John Borghetti (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/virgin-australia-ceo-john-borghetti-to-step-down-20180611-h1195a), appointing two executive search firms just two weeks after he announced his intention to depart by 2020.

Ms Bryan describes a new CEO appointment as "the biggest thing a board ever does" and wants to ensure the transition is managed well. "We've said to John 'will you give us to the beginning of 2020?' He hopes he won't stay that long and I wouldn't expect he would have to," said Ms Bryan, who also chairs Insurance Australia Group.

Maritana Partners, a relatively new boutique firm with domestic airline expertise, and Russell Reynolds have been appointed and the board will consider both external and internal candidates.

Mr Borghetti has been chief executive for eight years and implemented a strategy to transform Virgin from a budget carrier to a full-service competitor to Qantas Airways.

"The John Borghetti era was the era of taking that start-up and making it a full-service airline," she said. "I came in at the beginning of the fourth phase, which is what I think of as corporate stability, taking what we've got, improving the balance sheet, improving the costs, positioning of the company, formalising the systems and processes."

The next phase was a consolidation and growth phase, she added, which would include expanding the North Asia international network and further growing the Chinese domestic travel market.

Ms Bryan says one of Virgin's advantages in being a relatively new company is its culture, which has always included consideration of all its stakeholders, rather than just shareholders.

"If you talk to big, big organisations, you will be talking to them about cultural problems. We don't have cultural problems here because the culture is very clear."

But she added culture alone is not enough, and that Virgin's recent focus had been building out systems, processes and support structures to allow it to continue to grow.

Ms Bryan is facing ongoing calls from some investors, including Wilson Asset Management, to privatise the airline as 92 per cent of Virgin's share register is held by five large shareholders, including Etihad Airways, Singapore Airlines, China's HNA Group, Nanshan Group, which each own about 20 per cent, and Richard Branson's Virgin Group, which owns 10 per cent. There is frequent speculation about whether one will seek to sell its holding. The company bought back shares from many minority shareholders, but Ms Bryan said the large shareholders – at this stage – preferred to keep the company as a listed entity.

Ms Bryan said juggling different shareholder interests was an everyday, albeit demanding, part of a board's role. And she stressed that while it was important to listen to all investors, the board had a clear role to stay focused on managing the company for perpetuity.

"That's the job to be able to manage it. It's manageable. You stay focused on what the company needs to do, and for Virgin, that's keeping our second airline competitive," Ms Bryan said.

"There are different interests and different pressures all over the place, and there always have been... but you've got to find a way that's right for the company."

In response to a question about whether directors were able to be across all relevant detail, Ms Bryan said that under the Corporations Act, that was what was required, though noted it wasn't possible to do so personally on a daily basis, which meant that strong systems and processes were necessary. She added that experience helped identify problems quickly.

"I know it's not fashionable to talk about experience now. If you are experienced and you have sat on a lot of these companies and worked through these companies, by the time you get to my age you have got a very good smoke detector," she said. "You don't have to go one on one in the murky side of IT, but you've heard what an IT program that isn't working sounds like... you have that experience, and that instinct across the board. If someone doesn't get it, someone else with a slightly different background will pick it up.

"I came up the hard way. I was sort of in the first wave of women that came through; it was for me for, step by step, bit by bit, there was no kind of jumping. I think personally it's very hard to come onto a board now with all the responsibilities of a board without a really good grounding in businesses and how they run."

Snakecharma
28th Jun 2018, 23:14
Well that seals it, it is definite that the board, and the chair in particular, do not have a clue about what is going on inside the company.

Tommy Bahama
28th Jun 2018, 23:40
EB has absolutely no idea what she’s talking about. She’s an embarrassment. It might be time to get out of the boardroom and take a walk around the terminal and I’m not talking “The Club” or “The Chaimans Lounge” which she has previously admitted to being a member of.

Servo
29th Jun 2018, 04:27
She has no farkin idea. Seriously.

"we dont have cultural problems" says the person, along with the incumbent CEO that has created the mile long list of issues and lowest staff engagement/morale in Virgin's history. Even worse than BG.

Geez that article has made my blood boil.

InZed
29th Jun 2018, 07:01
EB is a joke with her hands over her eyes and ears. If she had/has spoken to any honest staff member, that would prove her wrong on most of that BS article. Flight crew in particular have all been almost unanimous in their support of: hating Virgin Australia's biggest issue - their management. She has no idea.

Time to start looking for a new board I think.

AerialPerspective
29th Jun 2018, 08:14
In Today’s Australian

EB is conducting the search it seems! Oh and there is no culture problem too.



Did she really say “...will you give us to the beginning of 2020?”

If so, she’s an idiot who can’t speak... I would think ‘give us UNTIL...’ would be correct.

AerialPerspective
29th Jun 2018, 08:18
EB is a joke with her hands over her eyes and ears. If she had/has spoken to any honest staff member, that would prove her wrong on most of that BS article. Flight crew in particular have all been almost unanimous in their support of: hating Virgin Australia's biggest issue - their management. She has no idea.

Time to start looking for a new board I think.

My impression is that the ‘culture’ is SO bad that most people won’t tell truth to power for fear of recriminations... a lot of small minded empire builders in that organization who care not one jot for anything other than heir own self- aggrandizement and prosperity, even at the cost of the company...

Servo
29th Jun 2018, 09:18
I am all for empowering women in the work force, as well as equilising wages, even if it was a male that replied in such a way as that article, how on earth does she have ANY idea what is going on at the coalface? What level of aviation or airline experience does she have again?

The Bullwinkle
29th Jun 2018, 12:02
My impression is that the ‘culture’ is SO bad that most people won’t tell truth to power for fear of recriminations... a lot of small minded empire builders in that organization who care not one jot for anything other than heir own self- aggrandizement and prosperity, even at the cost of the company...
Your impression is absolutely spot on.

InZed
29th Jun 2018, 22:04
My impression is that the ‘culture’ is SO bad that most people won’t tell truth to power for fear of recriminations... a lot of small minded empire builders in that organization who care not one jot for anything other than heir own self- aggrandizement and prosperity, even at the cost of the company...


This. 100% correct. Elizabeth Bryan - listen out.

The Bullwinkle
3rd Jul 2018, 06:36
Is the Virgin Pilots forum still down for others?
Still down. Been receiving the following message for the last 2 weeks now.
Offline for an upgrade. Check back in a few days.

On Guard
3rd Jul 2018, 11:01
Is this a forum on prune or virginetics?

hoss
3rd Jul 2018, 11:23
Out of interest did the crew work out a name for his rickshaw in HK?

;)

The Bullwinkle
3rd Jul 2018, 14:34
Out of interest did the crew work out a name for his rickshaw in HK?

;)
😆😆😆 That’s Gold!

hoss
4th Jul 2018, 12:27
Sad news.

Just read about the HNA chairman falling to his death in France.

(South East Asia Forum)

piston broke again
4th Jul 2018, 14:07
Never mind the shareholder revolt, there will be a frontline staff revolt if the renewed DAMP policy comes through...

TBM-Legend
4th Jul 2018, 22:39
21% shareholder HNA has defaulted on major lending and aircraft leases. It is thought that the Chairman took a dive or was pushed. No more free cash from then to the house of cards...

No Idea Either
5th Jul 2018, 09:05
Who thought that TBM, please let us know.

TBM-Legend
5th Jul 2018, 09:31
https://www.scmp.com/business/companies/article/2153774/troubled-hna-pledges-luxury-house-hong-kongs-victoria-peak-loan

I have a senior friend in the HK banking world who told me that there is some speculation in HK. Also our man 'ran and jumped on the wall" said another eyewitness! Not normal to do that with a 50' drop on the other side.

House in HK looks like a nice shack for a Cathay pilot crash pad..

Gate_15L
6th Jul 2018, 03:13
Tigerair chief Merren McArthur takes on aviation boys' club as Virgin seeks CEOMerren McArthur (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/virgin-ceo-john-borghetti-lays-out-departure-plan-20180611-h11961) has been at the helm of Tigerair Australia for less than three months, but she is already being touted as a possible successor to take over as chief executive of its parent, Virgin Australia.

Last month, Virgin boss John Borghetti announced his decision (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/virgin-australia-ceo-john-borghetti-to-step-down-20180611-h1195a) to depart the airline by the end of next year, leaving McArthur and Virgin’s head of domestic and international operations, Rob Sharp, as the two most likely internal candidates to replace him.

If McArthur were to be successful she would become the first woman to lead one of Australia’s two major airlines. As it is, she is a rarity in the global aviation industry, a notorious boys’ club.

Females make up just 3 per cent of global airline bosses and when the board of governors of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) posed for a picture to mark its annual meeting in Sydney in June, there was just one woman among 26 executives.

https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/h/1/0/y/h/3/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1528097665903.jpg

Adding fuel to the fire, IATA’s chairman, Qatar Airways chief Akbar al Baker, responded to questions by insisting only a man could lead his airline (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/forget-gender-diversity-qatar-airways-ceo-says-a-woman-cant-do-his-job-20180605-h110lm) “because it is a very challenging position”.McArthur is unruffled by the IATA controversy. “I [grew up with] two older brothers,” she explains. “I’ve never accepted that because I’m a woman I should not be expected to do this or do that.

"There are events and times when you come across people who aren’t comfortable with dealing with a woman. To me, it’s like water off a duck’s back. I’m just going to continue to do what I do.”

McArthur says to achieve meaningful change in the industry’s gender balance, there needs to be a break in the cycle.

“If it becomes a male-dominated industry, then there are certain expectations about what it is to be a leader in that industry.
https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/h/1/1/9/r/o/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1528772329770.jpg

“People, by human nature, recruit in their own likeness. If you’ve got lots of male leaders then they’ll tend to look at other male leaders.”

This philosophy could work in reverse – and in McArthur’s favour – as Virgin Australia conducts its global search to replace Borghetti, who is leaving the airline (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/virgin-australia-ceo-john-borghetti-to-step-down-20180611-h1195a) after eight years at the helm. The search will be led by a woman, Virgin chair Elizabeth Bryan.

Asked a week before Borghetti’s announcement if she has ambitions to run a major airline, McArthur is non-committal.

“Maybe,” she says. “I don’t really have these lofty goals that I focus on. I focus on my current role. This is a big enough airline for me right now.” But she adds: “Whatever opportunities arise, I’ll grab.”https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/g/o/f/d/x/n/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1461652439339.jpg

That’s certainly what McArthur has done throughout her career.

Over the past 10 years, the former lawyer and mother of four daughters has taken on a number of leadership positions at Virgin Australia: running its regional airline, setting up its cargo division and heading up the airline’s alliance network.

Determined to make the move from law to business, McArthur joined what was then Virgin Blue in 2008, when it was run by Brett Godfrey. She has always been attracted to “challenger brands” and Virgin fitted the bill.

“At that stage, Virgin was ... relatively young and I really liked how it had changed the aviation market in Australia.”
https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/2/6/v/x/o/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1349103053500.jpg

However, neither aviation nor law were McArthur’s first career choice. Growing up in Melbourne with her two brothers and younger sister, she wanted to become a diplomat, following a student exchange to South Africa.

Having been advised it was a good pathway, she studied arts/law at the University of Melbourne. Although she gained good marks, they weren’t quite high enough for her chosen calling, so she became a reluctant lawyer.

From the start, she was drawn to commercial law and ended up working on some of Victoria’s big privatisations during the 1990s. After 20 years, she wanted to move on from law and take on a business role.

This wasn’t as easy as she thought.https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/g/h/u/z/z/0/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1435050510869.jpgThe transition from lawyer“There was an expectation that partners in law firms don’t have the commercial and business sense to be able to work in a corporate environment,” she explains.

So when the role of deputy state solicitor in Western Australia came up in 2005, she decided to take it. This was a big decision as she was leaving behind a high-paying job and packing up her young family – all four girls were still in primary school – to move to Perth.

“When I told the managing partner that I was leaving the partnership to go and work in the public service, he nearly fell off his chair,” she says. “It was about a quarter of the income.”

After two years, McArthur got her entry into the corporate world, working on commercial agreements for Rio Tinto’s iron ore division. A year later, she made the leap to Virgin Blue, settling the family in Brisbane.

These interstate moves were possible because McArthur’s husband is an architect and could work from home.

During her first six months at Virgin, McArthur kept thinking “once this particular project or this particular challenge is behind us, it will settle down and it will get back to business as usual but it never did”.

One of the more testing periods was during the October 2011 grounding of Qantas’ fleet, when McArthur was responsible for putting on extra Virgin flights to help stranded customers.https://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/h/1/2/5/c/2/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1530511505359.jpg

But the closest she came to a full-blown career crisis was a year earlier, when she found herself in the middle of a showdown between Virgin Australia and the US Department of Transport, which had rejected a proposed alliance between Virgin and Delta Air Lines.

McArthur, who was in charge of Virgin’s alliance network and responsible for the Delta Air Lines alliance, was sitting on one side of a long table, flanked by Borghetti, head of government affairs Jane McKeon and Australian ambassador to the US Kim Beazley. Opposite them at the department’s new headquarters down the road from Capitol Hill were two rows of about 16 officials.

Virgin’s alliance strategy – one of the key planks of Borghetti’s airline overhaul – appeared to be in disarray.

“We weren’t prepared for [the Delta knock-back] at all,” she concedes. “Everybody just assumed this was a slam dunk because we were the two smaller operators on that route. We were just expecting it to be a yes and the ACCC had already approved it.”

To make matters worse, Virgin’s alliance with Air New Zealand was rejected by the Australian competition regulator just a day after the Delta knockback.

“All in 24 hours,” says McArthur. “I was thinking, oh my gosh, this is my career.”

But McArthur and Virgin managed to turn both decisions around, and this intense period helped pave the way for her promotion (https://www.afr.com/business/transport/aviation/virgin-australia-appoints-merren-mcarthur-as-tigerair-boss-20180321-h0xrsa) in May to run its low-cost carrier Tigerair. (Air New Zealand this year switched sides, announcing it would end its alliance with Virgin and set up a codeshare partnership with Qantas.)Seeking stabilityMcArthur won’t say much about her plans for Tigerair. It is early days and after the interview, she is heading off to brief the Virgin board about her strategy. During her first two weeks she met with about 200 staff, roughly a third of the airline’s workforce, visiting crews and riding with pilots.

She has been charged with stabilising the airline after its earnings took a hit from a regulatory dispute in Indonesia, which prompted the unexpected exit from its Bali route last year (https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/tigerair-cancels-flights-between-australia-and-bali-permanently-20170203-gu4hzp.html). Earnings fell almost 13 per cent in the first half to $6.7 million as a result.

She takes umbrage at a suggestion she is at the unglamorous end of a glamorous industry.

“Low cost doesn’t mean you have to be cheap and nasty,” she insists. “To me, I see it as innovative and providing a good value proposition where people can choose what they want and pay for what they want and keep the airline industry competitive.”

We return to the subject of the day – being a woman in such a male-dominated industry.

“I haven’t tried to develop my skills to be a man, but perhaps I’ve developed my skills to be effective in that environment,” she says.

“Sometimes you need to change the way you message to make sure you’re heard. Importantly, once you get comfortable in that environment, you can use your femininity to your advantage. I quite enjoy that.”

https://www.afr.com/brand/boss/tigerair-chief-merren-mcarthur-takes-on-the-aviation-boys-club-20180613-h11brd



We here at Virgin can virtue signal with the best of them.....

The Bullwinkle
6th Jul 2018, 08:06
Merren McArthur!!! WTF?!?
So it’s more important to just appoint a female CEO, rather than a more competent male who actually knows how to run an airline?!?
Good luck to everybody at Virgin if she gets the job.

Kranz
6th Jul 2018, 09:27
So it’s more important to just appoint a female CEO, rather than a more competent male who actually knows how to run an airline?!?



Thats no different to how the cadetship has been run since its inception... I'm all for females in this or any industry, and in any capacity - but appointments should be on merit only.

EDIT: in no way am I suggesting that any of the females that have gone through the cadetship are not good pilots - I don't know any of them but I assume they are just as competent (if not more so) that their male counterparts. All I am suggesting is that preference was given to females over males during the selection process.

Tommy Bahama
6th Jul 2018, 10:15
It would be a very sad reflection on how attractive/respected Virgin is if she’s the best they can find after a worldwide search.

Snakecharma
6th Jul 2018, 10:28
The CEO Hunger Games has begun. The people who think they are in the hunt or are being pushed forward are harnessing the power of the press to advocate their position.

The next few months will be interesting as the cat fighting and bitch slapping at the C level begins - or becomes more obvious.

One thing is for sure, a certain well dressed individual will be working the angles to make sure that whomever takes over doesn't go through and "trash" his legacy - whatever that may be

Servo
6th Jul 2018, 10:52
As head of freight, she allegedly pointed at the clapped out 146 and asked "what is that?".....................................

Great.

Oh and I grew up with five sisters, maybe I could be CEO material.

The name is Porter
6th Jul 2018, 11:41
All in 24 hours, says McArthur. I was thinking, oh my gosh, this is my career.

mmm, is it just me? But I would be thinking 'This doesn't look good for the company that pays my wages, or for the employees and shareholders that are counting on me to get this deal done' [email protected] lawyers, they're all the same whether they're politicians or business people, scumbags.

On Guard
6th Jul 2018, 12:18
15% females makeup the cadet apps yet the goal is to give them 50% of the positions? How is that getting the best pilots?

TBM-Legend
6th Jul 2018, 13:06
...clapped out 146


What "clapped out" 146 was that? [Tell me about your aircraft please.] I'm sure the crews flying these aircraft are happy to be flying a jet and have good time off...

Interceptheading
6th Jul 2018, 14:03
We’re screwed, EB and MM.

RIP

Anyone got the number to that truck driving school....

The Bullwinkle
6th Jul 2018, 14:22
We’re screwed, EB and MM.

RIP

Anyone got the number to that truck driving school....

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Wp6fiXarP5U

Switchbait
6th Jul 2018, 23:40
What he said ^^

The lunatics have taken over the asylum

dodgybrothers
7th Jul 2018, 10:11
As a QF employee, I pray that MM gets the gig - 4 more years of prosperity!
for the sake of my VA friends I hope they cast the net wider than the current offerings.

IsDon
7th Jul 2018, 10:39
As a QF pilot I hope MM doesn’t get the gig.

I don’t want to see DJ go under. I have lots of mates that work for DJ and it’s subsidiaries. Nobody wants to see it fail.

Putting MM in charge of DJ is as foolish as putting Ali W in charge of Qantas. Destined to fail.

Jeps
9th Jul 2018, 08:36
In the list of so called achievements I am failing to see which ones are in fact achievements???

Rated De
9th Jul 2018, 09:31
A viable and effective VAH is in Australia's best interest.
It also slows monopolistic behaviour on the part of the other.




Sure thing, a solicitor, a bit of time with rocks and a few years in a messy subsidiary...
When gender is the sole feature of an applicant it remains pure luck that the best candidate is hired...

The Bullwinkle
9th Jul 2018, 09:31
In the list of so called achievements I am failing to see which ones are in fact achievements???
I still can’t believe JB’s “achievements” includes an Order of Australia medal for services to Aviation.
Obviously it was for services to QANTAS Aviation! :ugh:
”Blunty” apparently did a “Fantastic” job of transforming Tiger, according to JB. There’s another great achievement.
I think these clowns have been drinking so much cool aid, they believe their own propaganda!

Buster Hyman
9th Jul 2018, 10:25
”Blunty” apparently did a “Fantastic” job of transforming Tiger, according to JB.When you categorically refuse to listen to bad news, then it's all good isn't it!