“The report also showed several group photographs of the people involved in managing MAS but none looked smart enough to run the company. One guy has a sneering smile on his face. The one seated and the person standing behind him looked smug, while the lady who was standing tried to look impressive and the man standing on her left tried to fake a smile”
Another MAS revamp plan? Don't be fooled, this GLC is taking us for a ride
Early warning: here
Since Ahmad Jauhari was just appointed as the new CEO recently, he must have had a very tough responsibility to ensure MAS makes profit but he must also be aware of the its past performance, and reading through the MAS Annual Report for 2010 there are some salient points to consider.
The front page of the 2010 MAS Annual Report has a large print followed by the next page stating its vision; " and its mission;
No, it is not a joke!
Of course, what actually happened was that despite recording a 5% higher revenue of RM3.565bil compared to RM3.40bil in the previous quarter, Malaysia Airlines made a net loss of RM478 million for the third quarter of 2011 ended 30 September 2011. Ahmad Jauhari and team attributed this to higher fuel costs and unrealized foreign exchange losses from outstanding USD borrowings. The cumulative year-to-date net loss for the Group stood at RM1,247 million.
The MAS annual report then showed the airline's journey throughout 2010 with so many milestones being achieved involving signing new agreement for maintenance between the group and other airlines, its involvement in a reality show TV program, charity event, launching of new routes, launching of new products related to holidays, new business partnerships and all sorts of seemingly profitable business ventures. But few details were given as to whether these really made money, although by now, Malaysians know MAS has been losing money for quite a while.
Unfortunately the first important information MAS focused on is the board of directors, their re-appointment, appointment of new members and the approval of the directors’ fees. Yes, that is their first order of business.
Then, it moved on to more shares being allocated to the relevant directors and all the legal mandates needed to ensure that no matter whether MAS was making profit or going bankrupt - the positions and all the entitlements of the entire board could be secured first. No mention of ensuring that MAS made profit, or of eradication of wastages and corrupt practices and paying back the money MAS owes the government from all the bailouts through the years.
It was also listed that under the MAS umbrella, there are 22 subsidiaries and 6 investment associates. The impression one get when reading the report should be impressive but there was nothing written whether any of them are losing money or if all of them are making profit. Surely since MAS' mission is to consistently make profit, these business ventures should be profitable. But are they making profits?
The report also showed several group photographs of the people involved in managing MAS but none looked smart enough to run the company. One guy has a sneering smile on his face. The one seated and the person standing behind him looked smug, while the lady who was standing tried to look impressive and the man standing on her left tried to fake a smile.
Another group photo and this time with all the men standing and also trying to fake a smile left one with a most uncomfortable feeling. Maybe, they felt happy about the money each of them were going to get. Certainly, none looked worried about the financial status of the company. But why would they want to smile when MAS has not been making money for several years already?
Then the report printed out in detail the curriculum vitae of the top management to impress the readers. But if they are all that good, why is MAS still losing money? Are they really good? Good at what? Losing money? Siphoning money?
The next section of the report proves the point that the whole management team is packed with incompetent souls when the dividend for year 2010 was declared to be only 7.2sen per share!
But MAS managed to fly 15.7 million passengers and the gross revenue for the group was RM13.6 billion. Still, because gross expenditure was RM13.5 billion before tax, no wonder MAS was able to pay only 7.2 sen dividend per share!
It is common sense that MAS must reduce the expenditure to get more profit but unfortunately there is no such effort to reduce the expenditure because the amount of money that needs to be siphoned out has been fixed. Cynical? Look at the carrier's loss record then.
So the effort and planning by the new MAS CEO Ahmad Jauhari to form another Premier Airline as announced recently is just another proposal for a money-making-scheme.
If Ahmad Jauhari is not careful, he will be accused of following in the footsteps of what Prime Minister Najib Razak is doing now, borrow more money and siphon it out, without even considering to reduce the carrier's expenditure, increase efficiency, trim the number of staff or reduce the number of the board of directors, reduce the remunerations, or even shutting down the losing subsidiaries or reviewing the present contracts and agreements between MAS and it vendors especially the catering company supplying food for MAS.
Malaysia is already RM445 billion in debt and MAS is contributing about RM1.2 billion of debt each year. Has the UMNO-BN government not learned any lessons yet? MAS should either buck up or just close shop.