Easyjet boardroom battle takes a turn

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  • JohnnyG
    Participant

    EasyJet tycoon Stelios Haji-Ioannou offers £5m reward to Airbus ‘whistleblower’

    https://news.sky.com/story/easyjet-tycoon-stelios-haji-ioannou-offers-1635m-reward-to-airbus-whistleblower-11986836?fbclid=IwAR1MrQ7k6aLOLWR0rPU2Fyd56Bjbpa81C1y_T5FtVFho1Hn5yrl2eFx5XLE

    He really wants this order cancelled, no matter what.


    GivingupBA
    Participant

    “EasyJet tycoon Stelios Haji-Ioannou offers £5m reward to Airbus ‘whistleblower’”

    He is sounding a bit desperate to me.


    esselle
    Participant

    “EasyJet tycoon Stelios Haji-Ioannou offers £5m reward to Airbus ‘whistleblower’”

    He is sounding a bit desperate to me.

    Or determined?

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    Montysaurus
    Participant

    More like fixated. Time to be rational instead of making these fanciful “prize” gestures.


    ASK1945
    Participant

    ………………. but is he right?

    Am I missing something? Why is easyJet pursuing a £4.5 Billion order for new planes when there are likely to be hundreds, if not thousands of almost new planes for sale soon, at knock-down prices?

    This is a question, not a statement. Can one of you in the aviation industry please explain why Stalios is “being “irrational and making fanciful gestures”?


    Roa1
    Participant

    Before inviting potential “Whistleblowers”, let’s look at some facts about the EasyJet fleet. Currently, EasyJet has a fleet of 337 planes, mostly the Airbus family A320’s and A321’s. Those aircraft’s have very high density seatings, and packed like sardines; A320 seats 186, and A321 has a staggering 235 seats. (The BA 787 series seats less than an EasyJet A321).

    EasyJet has ordered a further 114 planes; the A320’s and A321’s, all high density seating.

    Now, has EasyJet considered, the proposed new seating arrangements on aircraft’s and more importantly, the new regulatory changes that are being discussed to protect the travelling public and improve health and safety on airlines, which could also lead to design changes for aircraft coming to market in the foreseeable future? This may affect design changes to their current fleet of 337 planes.

    These ramifications have many risks and challenges, could EasyJet, with a fleet of some 450 aircraft, on borrowed money from the State coffers – succeed?


    SimonS1
    Participant

    Now, has EasyJet considered, the proposed new seating arrangements on aircraft’s and more importantly, the new regulatory changes that are being discussed to protect the travelling public and improve health and safety on airlines, which could also lead to design changes for aircraft coming to market in the foreseeable future?

    To answer your question – big companies employ dedicated people to keep abreast of legislation and lobby where required. So I am sure they have considered it.

    As for the order – this article gives some insight on why it isn’t a black and white issue. Particularly that existing aircraft purchased could be re-priced.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/willhorton1/2020/04/17/easyjet-tells-stelios-why-its-not-cancelling-airbus-order-for-107-aircraft/#158a27d95aa1

    4 users thanked author for this post.

    esselle
    Participant

    Now, has EasyJet considered, the proposed new seating arrangements on aircraft’s and more importantly, the new regulatory changes that are being discussed to protect the travelling public and improve health and safety on airlines, which could also lead to design changes for aircraft coming to market in the foreseeable future?

    To answer your question – big companies employ dedicated people to keep abreast of legislation and lobby where required. So I am sure they have considered it.

    As for the order – this article gives some insight on why it isn’t a black and white issue. Particularly that existing aircraft purchased could be re-priced.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/willhorton1/2020/04/17/easyjet-tells-stelios-why-its-not-cancelling-airbus-order-for-107-aircraft/#158a27d95aa1

    If you go back in time and look at the facts, Stelios was fighting against this order way before the COV impacts were anywhere near clear.

    If anything, the latest context supports his position.

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    SimonS1
    Participant

    Now, has EasyJet considered, the proposed new seating arrangements on aircraft’s and more importantly, the new regulatory changes that are being discussed to protect the travelling public and improve health and safety on airlines, which could also lead to design changes for aircraft coming to market in the foreseeable future?

    To answer your question – big companies employ dedicated people to keep abreast of legislation and lobby where required. So I am sure they have considered it.

    As for the order – this article gives some insight on why it isn’t a black and white issue. Particularly that existing aircraft purchased could be re-priced.

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/willhorton1/2020/04/17/easyjet-tells-stelios-why-its-not-cancelling-airbus-order-for-107-aircraft/#158a27d95aa1

    If you go back in time and look at the facts, Stelios was fighting against this order way before the COV impacts were anywhere near clear.

    If anything, the latest context supports his position.

    Indeed he was, but it appears the contract was signed in 2013. Without seeing it I’m not sure anyone can second guess how easy/hard it could be to terminate.


    cwoodward
    Participant

    I have read reports about this contract for over the past several years and have come to the conclusion that this has perhaps become more a battle of wills than now a constructive forward plan by ether party.
    ‘SimonS1’ draws attention above to the degree of difficulty or not in cancelling the contract but prior to that being addressed a consensus between the two parties will need to be reached as I cannot see Stellos becking off.
    Probably it is ultimately going to come down to some sort of redrawing of the the contract rather than an outright cancellation and the substantial downside cost that this will likely incur.
    EasyJet is going to need new and likely more aircraft going forward as almost 50% of its fleet (A319) is already over 13 years old and out of date as regards fuel efficiency.
    Stellos as the largest shareholder with some 35% and backing possible from several other shareholders should perhaps run the business again himself if he wants to call the tune. Shouting from the sidelines is unlikely to be his best way forward as I see it.

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    Inquisitive
    Participant

    Number of seats in an airplane had limited bearing with its overall design (fuselage mainly).

    A airline company can adjust seat anytime.

    This particular order was placed long ago, when Easyjet was growing fast; no one foresaw the present situation.


    JohnnyG
    Participant

    I don’t suppose this helps their cause.. 9 million customers details including card details hacked

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-52722626

    5 users thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    Probably too late, but I’ve changed my PWD on the EZY site, deleted the CCs I used on it, and frozen the cards on the banking apps.


    JohnnyG
    Participant

    Further to Mark’s article yesterday on the BT newspage, The Times business article today adds more meat on the bones. This is almost as much as a farce as Jarndice v Jarndice..

    Spurious claims by Sir Stelios or just mistaken??

    Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou loses battle to remove directors from Easyjet board
    Robert Lea, Industrial Editor
    Saturday May 23 2020, 12.00am, The Times

    Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou’s motion failed to win a majority at an extraordinary meeting of the airline

    Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou yesterday failed in his attempt to eject four directors from the board of Easyjet in a row over a multi-billion-pound order for more than 100 new Airbus aircraft.

    Yet the dispute between Sir Stelios and the Easyjet board was still continuing last night, with the airline accusing the airline’s founder and largest shareholder of making untrue statements.

    Sir Stelios was defeated during an extraordinary meeting of the company by 133 million shares — almost all of them owned by Sir Stelios’s Easygroup vehicle — to 180 million. Of the shares cast, it was a defeat of 42.4 per cent to 57.6 per cent. A simple majority would have enabled Sir Stelios to demand the resignations of the four directors.

    At the end of the virtual meeting, held via internet link from the airline’s headquarters at Luton airport because of social distancing guidelines, John Barton, Easyjet’s chairman, said that the requisitioning of the meeting had been “hugely distracting” and had brought reputational damage to the company. Mr Barton was one of the directors Sir Stelios was trying to remove.

    Sir Stelios was unbowed in defeat and claimed that the vote had been fraudulent because three investors speaking for 15 per cent of the stock who voted against him — Invesco, Ninety One, the fund manager formerly known as Investec, and Phoenix Asset Management — were “related parties” of Airbus.

    Mr Barton emphasised that Easyjet’s board “rejects any insinuation” of involvement in “any impropriety”.

    Part of Sir Stelios’s campaign against the Easyjet board has involved what Mr Barton called “insinuations” that the Airbus aircraft order signed in 2013 had been achieved through bribery.

    In January Airbus paid €3 billion out of court to settle claims of institutional bribery and corruption and slush funds set up to entice airline executives to buy Airbus, rather than Boeing, aircraft.

    As part of the claims, Sir Stelios has named three Swiss lawyers, who he claims have had connections with Easyjet directors. He went further yesterday, claiming that one, Marc Bonnant, had been at a “secret dinner” with three Easyjet directors at a hotel in Lucerne in late 2016.

    Sir Stelios claimed that the meeting had been with Dame Carolyn McCall, the former Easyjet chief executive who was running the airline when the Airbus deal was struck and who is now the chief executive of ITV; Andrew Findlay, the finance director who is still in place and was one of the four directors Sir Stelios was trying to remove; and Warwick Brady, a former chief operating officer of the airline and now chief executive of Stobart Group.

    Contacted by The Times, Mr Bonnant said that he had no recollection of the meeting, had never met an Easyjet director, had never acted for or against Easyjet and had not the “slightest knowledge” of who Dame Carolyn was.

    In a statement last night, Easyjet said: “These statements simply are not true.”

    It is understood that on the day Sir Stelios claims the Swiss meeting took place, Dame Carolyn and Mr Findlay were in London meeting Easyjet shareholders, including Sir Stelios’s Easygroup.

    Mr Brady declined to comment on the allegations, other than to say that on the date of the supposed dinner he was not employed by Easyjet, having left the airline eight weeks earlier.

    Easyjet shares fell 17½p, or 3 per cent, to 557½p last night.


    Roa1
    Participant

    Can the Easyjet board or the Airline survive in the forthcoming “data breach” Tsunami battle in court, and also, separately with the Information Commissioner under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) financial sanctions? EasyJet announced last week that sensitive personal data (names, email addresses and travel data) of 9 MILLION customers around the world had been exposed in a data breach, and they had waited 4 months before notifying its customers.

    Now, an International Law Firm, have issued a class action claim against Easyjet in the High Court in London, a potential liability of £18 BILLION or £2,000 per person of those affected by the data breach. We have to wait and see what the Information Commissioner has in store for that EasyJet breach.

    In 2018, in a similar incident, cyber hackers had breached BA’s website and stolen information of some 380,000 customers and its website had been compromised. Because of that breach, the Information Commissioner fined British Airways’ the maximum penalty, amounted to 1.5% of its worldwide turnover of £11.6 billion in 2017, the possible maximum of more than £183 million. (The BA Accounts shows a reserve figure of £576 million?)

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