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THE BIZNOB – Global Business & Financial News – A Business Journal – Focus On Business Leaders, Technology – Enterpeneurship – Finance – Economy – Politics & LifestyleTHE BIZNOB – Global Business & Financial News – A Business Journal – Focus On Business Leaders, Technology – Enterpeneurship – Finance – Economy – Politics & Lifestyle

Breaking News

Breaking News

Qantas selects first female CEO as Alan Joyce departs.

Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, Nov. 6, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble
Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, N... Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, Nov. 6, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble
Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, Nov. 6, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble
Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, N... Qantas aircraft are seen on the tarmac at Melbourne International Airport in Melbourne, Australia, Nov. 6, 2018. REUTERS/Phil Noble

On Tuesday, Qantas Airways Ltd. (QAN.AX) appointed finance head Vanessa Hudson as its first female CEO. Hudson will succeed Alan Joyce, the longest-serving CEO of a major Australian firm and a global aviation leader, in November.

Hudson will be one of Australia’s few female CEOs, joining Virgin Australia’s Jayne Hrdlicka.

“I come with an understanding of this organization that is very deep,” Hudson told reporters in her first CEO designate press conference.

“I think that the experience that I’ve had, and also recently, in helping manage through COVID, places me in a great position to look forward in terms of all the investments that are coming with new aircraft, but also continuing to invest in our customers,” she added.

Qantas Chairman Richard Goyder said Hudson outperformed approximately 40 worldwide contenders for the finance and treasury role during the COVID-19 competition.

Qantas shares fell 2.4% on Tuesday against a 0.25% market drop.

“Vanessa has been market-facing as CFO since October 2019, which will have prepared her well for the very public role as Qantas CEO,” RBC Capital Markets analyst Owen Birrell said.

Hudson joined Qantas 28 years ago and served as CFO, chief customer officer, and senior vice president for the Americas and New Zealand.

Macquarie Group, Telstra Corp, Woodside, and AMP are Australian-listed firms with female CEOs.

Hudson was honored to run the airline.

“On a personal note, I have two young daughters, 21 and 18, and I’ve always been a mother who’s wanted to lead by example and listening to their reflections last night was incredibly meaningful to me,” she added.

Joyce, 56, led Qantas through the 2008 financial crisis, the COVID-19 epidemic, shifting fuel costs, and increased aviation competition.

During the epidemic, the flying kangaroo was criticized for canceling flights, eliminating employees, and receiving government aid.

Hudson said the airline is rebuilding consumer confidence. She must work hard to repair Joyce’s strained relationship with the unions.

After receiving death threats, Joyce recruited security in 2011.

In a statement, Transport Workers Union (TWU) National Secretary Michael Kaine called the announcement a wonderful chance for Qantas to reboot.

Qantas made a record first-half profit from a deficit this year because of surging travel demand from a populace shedding pandemic restrictions.

Joyce, a lesbian, has advocated for marriage equality, Aboriginal acknowledgment in the constitution, and corporate women’s advancement.

“There’s not many female CEOs in the worldwide aviation industry, and it’s a credit to this country that a gay man was appointed 15 years ago to be CEO of the company, and now we have the first female accredited to the board,” Joyce remarked at the news conference.

Joyce and his husband would volunteer in Sydney and pursue other opportunities.

At the 2023 annual general meeting, Hudson will become Qantas’ 13th CEO.


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