Emirates chief commercial officer Thierry Antinori resigns

Thierry Antinori pictured in 2014. (Reuters/File Photo)
Updated 12 May 2019
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Emirates chief commercial officer Thierry Antinori resigns

Reuters DUBAI: Emirates Chief Commercial Officer Thierry Antinori has resigned, a spokeswoman said on Sunday, days after the Dubai-based airline announced its weakest profit in a decade.
Antinori, also an executive vice president, was responsible for commercial operations, products, the frequent flyer program and cargo division, according to Emirates’ website.
The spokeswoman declined to comment when asked why Antinori resigned and when it was effective.
Antinori spoke to media in his capacity as an Emirates executive on April 24 in Dubai and was seen at the Emirates stand at a travel exhibition in Dubai on April 29.
Adnan Kazim, divisional senior vice president, strategic planning, revenue optimization & aeropolitical affairs, has been appointed acting CCO, the spokeswoman said.
Emirates reported a 69 percent fall in full-year profit last week, its lowest in 10 years as soaring fuel costs and a strong dollar took a toll on earnings, while passenger growth stalled.
Antinori joined Emirates as executive vice president for passenger sales worldwide in October 2011 and was promoted to CCO in June 2013, Emirates’ website shows.
Antinori said in 2016 he was contacted about becoming the Air France-KLM chief executive but that he was sticking with the Dubai-based carrier.


HSBC plans more China tech jobs in push for market share

Updated 58 min 18 sec ago
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HSBC plans more China tech jobs in push for market share

  • Europe’s biggest bank by assets will boost headcount at its technology centers in Guangzhou, Shanghai and Xi’an by 14 percent
  • HSBC’s expansion plan in China comes amid growing use of technology in the financial sector — from payments to transactions
HONG KONG: HSBC plans to add more than 1,000 jobs this year at its technology development centers in China, as the Asia-focused lender seeks to bolster its presence in the world’s second largest economy.
Europe’s biggest bank by assets will boost headcount at its technology centers in Guangzhou, Shanghai and Xi’an by 14 percent from a current 7,000-strong workforce, said HSBC Chief Information Officer Darryl West.
In recent years the London-based bank has spent $3 billion annually on its group technology operations which employ 40,000 people worldwide, and West said annual investments of $3-$3.5 billion are planned over the next few years.
Many global banks set up low-cost hubs in China and India more than a decade ago to maintain their complex worldwide information technology networks, but these centers have now become a core part of their operations.
The centers develop and implement risk and fraud management technologies, as well as digital applications that make it easier for banks to attract customers and deliver faster and more secure services.
HSBC’s expansion plan in China, a key market for the bank, comes amid growing use of technology in the financial sector — from payments to transactions.
At stake is a bigger share of the billions of dollars worth of retail and corporate banking business in a major financial market with a growing customer base.
“There is a lot more we can do with technology in mainland China. The level of technology adoption and innovation in China is way ahead of other markets,” West told reporters during a tour of HSBC’s technology center in the southern city of Guangzhou last week.
“We see mainland China as a tremendous source of talent, not just for the local market but our technology operations globally. We are hiring very aggressively here,” he added.
About 30 percent of the work done at the Guangzhou center, the largest HSBC tech facility in China with more than 5,000 employees, is for the mainland market and that share is expected to grow over the next couple of years.
HSBC is also using China-based tech centers to develop banking products for its global network, such as the bank’s UK mobile app which was developed in the northwestern city of Xi’an.
Outside China, HSBC employs more than 10,000 people at technology centers in India, with the rest in countries such as Britain, Canada, Hong Kong and the United States.
HSBC has in recent years lifted investment in China, including the prosperous southern Pearl River Delta region. Mainland China and Hong Kong together accounted for nearly 40 percent of the bank’s revenue in 2018.
The bank will invest $15-$17 billion in the next three years in areas including technology and China, its Chief Executive John Flint said last year.
The limited physical presence of foreign banks in China compared to dominant domestic rivals has been a challenge.
HSBC’s losses in retail banking and wealth management (RBWM) in mainland China widened to $200 million last year from $44 million in 2017. The bank aimed to reverse that with its investments in technology.
“Things like that, we see as very important for the next phase of our business growth ... once the major investments have gone in, RBWM will grow bigger and also profitable,” said HSBC Greater China Chief Executive Helen Wong.