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Boeing Board Blocks Shareholder Push to Bring HQ Back to Seattle

Boeing’s board has killed a longshot shareholder proposal that the company move its headquarters back to Seattle. The proposal was put forward to be voted on this spring at Boeing’s annual general meeting by 83-year-old Walter Ryan, a retired Chicago business owner, corporate gadfly and stock market investor who owns 10,000 shares in the company. ( More...

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Dean Brossman 47
Too bad they don't recognize the fact that their problems really got started when they moved HQ to Chicago. It was not the move that did them in, but the attitude change that financial interests are more important than what their job is. Their Job is to make safe reliable aircraft so they can make money. The current Boeing leadership thinks it is to make money by selling aircraft. Just my humble opinion.
Nultech 18
I've seen this happen many times. When a successful company becomes run by accountants, it goes into decline, because making money is the secondary goal, not the primary one. If you build airplanes, build the best, safest planes possible and the cash will take care of itself.
MSU Sparty 2
I don't disagree with you, you do know that Boeing is now HQ in Arlington VA and the Chicago experiment was a failure and Boeing admitted as much
MSU Sparty 1
The 787 Dreamliners being produced at the Charleston SC Plant have had very little issues compared to Seattle factories. SC is a right to work State and it was a great move by Boeing.
srobak 0
That has nothing to do with this
MSU Sparty 1
It does,,,,there are better places to be HQ and better work environments than Seattle
Mike Hindson-Evans 0
Hmm: I fear that they were doomed a long, long time before someone shouted "Wagons East!"

If only they had adopted Douglas (post-DC10 trauma) standards in the merger....
bentwing60 27
Kudos Walter Ryan, at 83 years young no less, make em' admit that they would rather hang around where the Moola influence is, rather than where their commercial product originated and is primarily produced.

The MIC side is cost plus.

DC, the home of the endless war!
Mike Hindson-Evans 0
What, going all the way to Carolina?
jmilleratp 10
The objective at Boeing is to save every penny possible. All other considerations fall far down the list.
lynx318 9
Bad decision by the board unfortunately inherited MD beancounters. Put the engineers back in charge and put the headquarters back near their prime manufacturing plant to keep the R&D and build processes inline and on track for best production. Not just for efficiency but for safety and quality.
druck13 9
It's hardly surprising the SEC backed Boeing up, they are only concerned financial regulations, and as long as Boeing is making money, don't care about good engineering, or even lives.
Scottie Marable 7
I want the best pilots, planes, flight attendants and maintenance people when flying. And I want, for example, the best doctors. Both have your life in their hands. I really don’t care about who or what they are, believe in, religion or color, I am asking for people who know what they are doing!
ejjacob 13
Most comments miss the point...... Mr Ryan states "In a statement supporting his proposal, Ryan wrote that “Boeing became an industry leader in commercial aviation because of the close working relationship between manufacturing, engineering, and management.”

He added that “the most significant factor” in the company’s decline “was relocating Boeing’s headquarters from Seattle and separating executives from Boeing’s core commercial manufacturing business.”

He wrote that returning the headquarters to Seattle “will send a meaningful signal Boeing credibly intends to resume its position at the top of the commercial airplane business, restore its reputation for safety and excellence, and is committed to fixing its problems.”

Mr Ryan is absolutely correct - and perhaps if there was enough support from stockholders it would pressure Boeing to go back to it's roots.
Neil Postlethwaite 2
Have the HQ close to manufacturing- not just a remove admin shop.
Gregg Bender 6
Moving the headquarters back to Seattle will do no good unless they get rid of all the bean counters. I don't see that happening.
Harry Schluderberg 5
There ya have it. As expected this tells us where the roots of Boeings problems are. The Boardroom.
Peter Matonis 5
Bean counters do it again!
MBAs are the scourge of engineering and technology.
Rob Palmer 4
When I worked at Boeing, not too many years ago, it still had the "old culture". Bill Boeing was a Yale grad, and the Seattle culture consisting of very loyal Scandinavian help, had built-in quality. Moving to Chicago, and later Arlington, can break up a thing like this. Looks like it did! C'mon Harvard Business School; let's focus on this case, and hang on it so everyone can remember for a long time. I've studied cost accounting, and I know what's involved.
Howard Blumstein 4
If history of large corporate headquarters moving over the last 50 years is a reasonable barometer, moving the location of HQ will not likely impact production and quality. These issues need to be addressed properly and rolled out to the 170,000 employees. Having worked for a large company, very few employees care about the location of HQ. Strong policies need to be effective at the local level first and foremost.
Jose R Gonzalez 3
Boeing board and top executives wanted to be in the swamp. They have ruined, destroyed a once proud american company leader in aeronautics. Now it is not even following. It is relegated to fourth place. Adios Boeing. We were once very proud of you. No more. If it's Boeing I ain't going.
WD Rseven 3
Of course, the board is against it. A move would make them look stupid. Oh wait, they are stupid.
Richard Loven 5
They should never left Seattle . It is better to be on the job site and see 1st hand what is happening than being in the Country Club 2000 miles away. It is like the Sears Tower. Once they were up in the Top Floors they became dreamers too important to check on what was going on on the store floors.
Bill Overdue 5
I don't need to subscribe to The Seattle Times ...
Jose R Gonzalez 1
Congrats. I don't either.
Tim Dyck 1
Thanks for the link
Mike Williams 1
Thanks for your lead. I'm only my beancounter for my self.
WhiteKnight77 2
While it might not matter where an HQ is, there needs to be people who understand the making of aircraft, what is needed to make aircraft, and a return to the philosophy that made Boeing the leader for so long. If that mean's showing the bean counters the door, then they need to go. Put the proper people in the accounting office, not just someone who went to business college and just understands numbers.
Jonathan McKinnon 2
I own Boeing stock, just waiting for a shareholders resolution to vote to oust all of the Boeing board members.
It should be a condition that all board members should hold at least a Private Pilots certificate.
I don't care if the stock rises; even if the stock remains flat, that's fine with me, JUST pay me the dividends!
WD Rseven 2
Boeing is owned by funds and fund managers only care about return on investment. They will figure out that Boeing is worth more in pieces than it is today. As for ousting the board, the fund managers would be dumb if they don't but they probably won't.
lynx318 1
Or an Engineers certificate.
MSU Sparty 3
Seattle ??? That place is now a smelly armpit. Homeless everywhere, high crime rate, police ranks are reduced, taxes are insane, traffic is awful, nothing what Seattle used to be!
srobak 3
Chicago is no different
Jaime Terrassa 1
Boeing is having problems with their planes. now they want to move back to Seattle if they are no making money were are they getting the money stay were you are and fix the problems instead of wasting money.
srobak 3
None of the manufacturing problems come from Chicago.
Forbes Mercy 1
of course the Board doesn't want the HQ in Seattle, it puts production too close to the bosses. Let's keep running Boeing like a corporation first, production component second. The basic tail wagging the dog mentality. Superior millionaire or billionaires think they know how to innovate, organize and produce airplanes. They likely spend all day on their financial sites, and if they have a chance to save a buck by eliminating inspectors so be it. If you want your lobbying division in D.C. go ahead, but put corporate next to production or big things are missed, and aren't you the poster child for a separated company. One screw up after another, that's on you.
Justthefacs 1
Keep bookkeepers in the back room and let them record the data. If you leave them in charge, they will "save" you to disaster. They are never responsible for sales only recording what another did.
Ellen Little 1
I remember when General Dynamics was located in San Diego and they made a part of the plane in the factory, then sent the part via barge up to Boeing in Seattle.
Those were the days.
Tim Haight 1
Boeing would not do anything that might give the labor force any say in the process. They will spend 10 times what they would gain in quality aircraft. They pulled the same thing on the 787 line when the parts from outside manufacturing had to be brought into specs because of lack of oversight durring these other companies work.its more than a shame, especially to buyers.
Mike Hindson-Evans 3
Don't outsource a problem; be clear on what is needed. Otherwise you end up with a "circular firing squad" where everyone blames everyone else.
Tim Haight 2
I'm not certain if you men that I did or what? My opinion was about Boeing only, with first hand knowledge of what I commented on as I was a manager on the 787 line from plane 1. If it would cost them money to have on sight oversight they didn't.
Ed Allen -3
Everyone seems so surprised about Boeing. Personally, I hope they go broke. They deserve it they’ve earned it. They worked hard for it. Let’s give it to them. Cheer them on!!! go broke Boeing. Show people how real woke does it! We are sick and tired of you.
Jose R Gonzalez 7
That is not the solution. 140,000 employees are counting on the bean counters for their livelihood. the solution is getting rid of the bean counters and putting savvy engineers in their seats. And put the bean counters to clean the toilets.
jeff slack 1
That is a really sad uneducated remark; then adding 'woke' means you are one of the many uneducated an orange politician loves.

For the stability of the USA and other businesses that would be impacted by the demise of Boeing, not to mention trade balances and what Boeing has meant to the USA and the world, that is such a sad terrible wish that they go 'broke' because you think they are 'woke'.

Greed has nothing to do with being woke.

An old saying; if you can not be part of the solution then you must be a part of the problem.
Opinions such as yours are part of the problem on many levels in the USA at the moment for many different situations.

Go sit in a chair in the corner and I will bring you a hat.
Klaus Kahle 7
Sorry to disagree, but the threat of going "Broke" may be the only thing to drive these corporate greedy execs onto the correct action path. Since money and wealth is the only thing that seems to matter to them, a penny valued boing share may be what's needed.
Mike Hindson-Evans 5
Well Jeff, they (Boeing) did a bang-up job of bullying Bombardier in Canada - I don't believe that THAT outcome worked well for Boeing, but certainly was to the benefit of the Canadian economy and Airbus.
Andrew Turnbull 5
If you think merely using the word "woke" means the writer is "one of the many uneducated an orange politician loves", then YOU are the one who needs to sit in a corner and wait for the hat.
Mike Hindson-Evans -2
The very last thing that the USA cowboy outfit needs is the additional distraction of another HQ move. Although, at least they would learn how to close doors properly of the shut up shop in Chicago!

[This comment has been downvoted. Show anyway.]

Charles ODonnell 3
I agree with most of the comments made, but they overlook the real reason Boeing left Seattle; a toxic relationship with the labor unions and taxation issues with Washington State. When they opened up non-union manufacturing in the South, and got tired of the many Disruption's by labor, they moved. The only thing keeping them in Washington is the huge backlog of work and the defense contract work. Their long term goal is to gradually ween themselves out of Washington.
WD Rseven 6
I wouldn't want to be a manufacturer, or any business for that matter, in Seattle or anywhere in Washington state.


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