Boardroom briefing: Boeing’s new CEO, Pacific businesses help OZ, and banks vs the climate emergency


The Boeing Company gets a new CEO, small Pacific businesses help Australia, and banks to curb investments in fossil fuels. Readings from around the world on business, leadership and management.

Getting a brand back on track

Credit: Boeing

After a major accident in Indonesia in 2018 and one in Ethiopia in 2019, Boeing has been under close scrutiny by airlines and governments worldwide – and its reputation has been seriously affected.

As a result, the company announced it would temporarily halt the production if its bestselling plane, the 737 MAX, to fix ‘software problems’ linked to the accidents. But will this fix it major PR problem and restore trust in its users?

PNG’s national airline, Air Niugini, opted to cancel its four Boeing 737 MAX aircraft orders in November last year. Its Managing Director, Alan Milne, said: ‘I can tell you we won’t be getting the Max in 2020 or 2021’. The company is  deliberating what between the Embraer E2 and Airbus A220 to upgrade its fleet.

What about Boeing?

The company is set to change its narrative and has appointed David Calhoun as President and CEO of The Boeing Company. Calhoun has served on Boeing’s board for a decade and knows the ins and outs of the 104-year-old company. In a statement he said: ‘With the strength of our team, I’m confident in the future of Boeing, including the 737 MAX.’

It’s been reported that if he gets the 737 Max safely in the air, he will get a US$7 million bonus. Will he do it?

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Pacific businesses join to help Australia

A coffee shop in Fiji, Weta Coffee, donated its Monday profits to the Australian Red Cross to help those who have lost everything in the fires that have destroyed over 10 million hectares (100,000 sq km or 15.6 million acres) of bush, forest and parks across Australia. The cafe transferred F3,000 (A$2,000) and other SMEs, such as The Merch, have joined them and matched their donation.

PNG, is also doing what it can, sending defence personnel to Australia to help exhausted firefighters and fundraising. It’s amazing to see small business and associations doing all they can to help. In PNG’s second-largest city, Lae, Giro Imbu from the Youth of Lae walked kilometres with a wheelbarrow and collected over K1,000 (A$430) to help its closer neighbour.

Curbing investment in fossil fuels

The world will face irreversible heating unless firms shift their priorities soon, according to the outgoing head of the Bank of England, Mark Carney.

He said the financial sector has begun to curb investment in fossil fuels – but it is happening too slowly. He said estimates from the leading pension fund analysis indicate that ‘if you add up the policies of all of companies out there, they are consistent with warming of 3.7 to 3.8 degrees Celsius’, which is ‘far above the 1.5 degrees that the people say they want and governments are demanding.’

Speaking to BBC, he said unless firms woke up to what he called the climate crisis, many of their assets would become worthless.

Carney has been appointed as the United Nations’ Special Envoy on Climate Action and Finance where he will ‘focus on ambitious implementation of climate action.’  He has estimated that US$90 trillion in infrastructure investment is expected between 2015 and 2030, about the equivalent of a year’s current world GDP. ‘Smart decisions today can ensure investment that is both financially rewarding and environmentally sustainable.’

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