By Murdo Morrison in London
One of Tom Enders’ first actions after taking ultimate responsibility for running Airbus was to hand Nöel Forgeard’s lavish office in Toulouse back to Airbus management. After becoming EADS co-chief executive with Enders last June, Forgeard had visited his former fiefdom at least once every two weeks.
Under the shake-up of EADS senior management, Enders – a German, who previously ran EADS’s defence business – has also become chairman of Airbus with reporting lines from Christian Streiff, Airbus’s new French chief executive, and the heads of EADS’s military transport and US divisions and chief operating officer (see chart). And, despite losing his luxurious pad, Enders is unlikely to be an absentee chairman, promising he and Frenchman Louis Gallois, Forgeard’s replacement as co-chief executive, will “closely integrate the Airbus division into the organisational structure of EADS”.
However, this plan could be sidelined by BAE Systems’ decision last week to hold off on selling EADS its 20% share in Airbus because of a low valuation by independent assessor Rothschild. Gallois has led French rail group SNCF and Aérospatiale and is an EADS non-executive board member. Reporting to him will be the heads of the space, defence and security systems and Eurocopter divisions, as well as the chief financial officer. The heads of technology and human resources will report to both chief executives.