AJ & Rashdan: “What Cost Cutting?” Part 2 – PlaneConsult
Updates @ 1:30 am on 15-3-2012:PlaneConsult is not the only consultant firm hired by MAS. Ernst & Young is another consultant firm that has been appointed to teach MAS Corporate Division how to do their work. It seemed that AJ and Rashdan, Amok’s crony and ex-business partner in BinaFikir Sdn Bhd, are heavily relying on consultants to do the thinking for them. It has been for some weeks that “two young sweet little” officers from Ernst & Young are in MAS Corporate Division. Quite frankly, it is a case of teaching “grandmothers how to suck eggs”. MAS had to pay good money as salaries and perks to these two handpicked “corporate gurus” by Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar and yet they needed consultants to think for them. It is laughable.
Under the circumstances, saving MAS is a foregone conclusion! Perhaps it is also a case of “Kepimpinan Melalui Tauladan”. Under Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar leadership, it has became Khazanah’s culture to engage consultant firms to think for them. The Government must account to Parliament what is the total payment made to consultant firms during Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar’s reign In Khazanah from June 2004 until today.
Updates @ 6:45 pm on 14-3-2012:YB Datuk Nancy, Batang Sadong MP, criticised the MAS – AirAsia share swap and CCF and called for the Government to reverse or cancell the them forthwith as it was not in the interest of the country. Yours truly believes that there will more MPs calling for the said share swap to be reversed as it was a failure from day one. It is hoped that Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar, MD of Khazanah and the ex-business partner of Rashdan when they were together in BinaFikir Sdn Bhd, will take note.
Cost cutting to turn around MAS said the TRIO. The TRIO consists of En Ahamd Jauhari Yahya (AJ) Group CEO of MAS, En Mohammed Rashdan Yusof aka Danny (Rashdan), who is Tan Sri Azman
Mokhtar’s (Amok) crony and his ex business partner in BinaFikir Sdn Bhd, and En Rozman Omar, the newly crowned CFO of MAS, who is the former Regional Finance Officer of AirAsia. Was cost cutting being coined by those with consultant mentality as a gimmick or their genuine intentions? Yours truly leave it to you to judge. For Part 1 please read HERE.
Now let us look at what AJ and Amok’s crony, Rashdan, have done in January 2012 for MAS in their cost cutting exercise under their so-called New Business Plan. Please read the so-called Business Plan as announced by AJ in HERE.
In October to November 2011 MAS engaged a Mat Salleh consultant known as PlaneConsult to carry out a selective review covering “Engineering & Maintenance, Commercial, Fleet Planning and Operational Control”. The said report was submitted to AJ and Amok’s crony, Rashdan. As of now, yours truly has no knowledge of how much MAS paid to PlaneConsult to do the so-called review. This must be part of AJ and the crony way of cost cutting! The person who appointed PlaneConsult to do this review was still unknown. Your guess is just as good yours!
It is clear that AJ and the crony, Rashdan, have no clue of their respective job besides signing documents to commit MAS and waste good money like what Rashdan, the Amok’s crony, has done in sponsoring QPR home jersey for RM18 million when MAS was bleeding, according to them. The RM18 million could have been put to better used by sponsoring our Harimau Muda, which has made a name for Malaysia. But definitely not to the crony as he preferred QPR, which Tan Sri Tony Fernandes is the co-owner. Read in HERE& HERE.
AJ and Rashdan, who is Amok’s crony, obviously pretend not to know that prior to the secret MAS-AirAsia share swap and CCF, AirAsia was a known competitor to MAS. For MAS to survive as an airlines, MAS must always be a competitor to AirAsia and other airlines. Tan Sri Tony Fernandes and Amok have been assuring members of the public that the said secret share swap was not a merger. But you will see below that it is not as simple as what they have said.
Does MAS really needs both AJ and Rashdan? MAS is paying AJ and Rashdan, who is Amok’s crony, a fortune in terms of their salaries and perks and their roles in MAS seemed to be restricted to appointing the Mat Salleh consultant, PlaneConsult, to think and plan for them. They have also allowed the appointment of Mr Shane Nollan as MAS Acting Commercial Director. Was the appointment of AJ and Rashdan, Amok’s crony, a case of GAJI BUTA?
On 04-01-2012 AJ and Amok’s crony, Rashdan, saw it fit to formally approve the appointment the Mat Salleh consultant known as PlaneConsult from 16-1-2012 to 30-4-2012. Please take note that why the appointment ended on 30-4-2012. I am just speculating that by 1-5-2012 something may happen. Will it be a much talked about new company called MAS Sdn Bhd be launched then?
Under the said appointment, PlaneConsultant is to provide “Implementation support for MAS Organisational and Process change within Engineering & Maintenance Commercial, Fleet Planning, Flight/Group Operations & OCC”. MAS had to pay PlaneConsult 651,000 Euro (equivalent to RM2, 604,000-00 at RM4 per Euro) excluding withholding tax (approximately 10%) as consultant fees and out of pocket expenses. Additional to the professional fees, PlaneConsult shall charge:
value added tax;
any duties, withholding taxes or other such taxes and levies;
for good, services and facilities acquired specifically for the assignment, and for all reasonable travelling and subsistence expenses at cost. Air travel on sectors over six hours shall be in premium economy or business class cabin;
any additional work requested shall be carried out at 500 Euro (equivalent to RM2,000)per hour for Conor McCarthy and up to 300 Euro (equivalent to RM1,200) per hour for other consultant. Such request shall be considered valid and agreed upon exchange of written communication including but not limited to email communication between PlaneConsult and CEO or COO of client.
What a good package for the appointment! We must commend AJ, Rashdan and the other members of the Board of Directors of MAS for a job well done!
To understand what have been happening in MAS under the secret MAS – AirAsia share swap and CCF, one had to look at the “Method of Working” of PlaneConsult. Before we go further on the so-called “Method of Working” let us examine the real person behind this PlaneConsult.
The executive chairman and MD of PlaneConsult is Mr Conor McCarthy, an Irish. By COINCIDENCE he is also the co-founder and director of AirAsia! Yours truly hopes that the picture will be a bit clearer now. PlaneConsult is also the consultant for AirAsia and AirAsia X Sdn Bhd. This is also by COINCIDENCE! Please read HERE.
PlaneConsult has stated in the document to MAS that amongst its clients are Air Asia, AirAsia X Sdn Bhd, Aerlingus, Qantas, Alitalia, Aero, Deccan, Spanair, Copa Airlines, Jet, Easy Jet and Pluna. But in its website no portfolio on its clients. Please read HERE.
Now let us properly examine the so-called “Working Method” or scope of work in simple term:
PlaneConsult will assign personnel who have executive line management in their specialist areas. This will include established members of PlaneConcult team who have already exposed to the MAS environment supplemented by other known subject matter experts with appropriate skill sets
A number of local individuals have already been identified and recommended as suitable to assume permanent roles within a restructured MAS, or seek further additional full time MAS resources if required. To avoid any ambiguity and for good order sake, the costs of these additional full time resources of MAS are not included within the budgetary figures used within this proposal. It would be expected that the ultimate recruitment and employment terms for these high caliber individuals would be managed by MAS with support provided by PlaneConsultant on request.
All PlaneConsult adopt a flexible working approach in close liason with the client. This allows ongoing review of priorities to ensure maximum return on investment in the shortest possible timescale whilst ensuring longer term opportunities are still highlighted. Our consultants will become embedded within the organization to ensure executive line management decisions are taken and acting as a catalyst for change where resistance may be encountered in some areas.
The embedded project team, lead by Andy Holmes, will conduct forthnightly progress briefings with Conor McCarthy as PlaneConsult Project Director attending in person every six week or otherwise as mutually agreed.
What a wide terms of reference for PlaneConsult! Why such wide powers were given to PlaneConsult? AJ, Rashdan, the Amok’s crony, and the other members of the Board of Directors must account to the nation!
Now yours truly hopes that you will now understand the actual situation in MAS. Both AJ and the Rashdan, who is Amok’s crony, could hide behind all the decisions made by stating that they were merely following the recommendations of the Mat Salleh consultant, PlaneConsult, whom by COINCIDENCE is also the consultant for AirAsia Bhd and AirAsia X Sdn Bhd, and its MD and executive chairman, Mr Conor McCarthy is also the director of AirAsia Bhd.
The glaring facts about the appointment of PlaneConsult are:
Its MD and Executive Chairman is Mr Conor McCarthy, who is also a co-founder and director of AirAsia;
PlaneConsult have also been appointed the consultant for AirAsia Bhd and AirAsia X Sdn Bhd;
After the said secret share swap has been inked by Amok on 9-8-2011, Tan Sri Tony Fernandes and Dato Kamarudin Meranun of AirAsia, who are the co-founders and top executives and AirAsia Bhd (like Mr Conor McMCarthy who is the co-founder of AirAsia), have been appointed to the Board of MAS; and
Mr Shane Nollan has been appointed as the Acting Commercial Director of MAS.
The pertinent questions that have been asked by many readers are:
Whether there was a conflict of interest in this appointment?
Whether PlaneConsult based on the “Working Method” stated above can provide objective opinions based on the and recommendations that can be seen as in the best interest of MAS bearing in mind its MD, Mr Conor McCarthy is a co-founder and existing director in AirAsia Bhd and is also the consultant for AirAsia and AirAsia X Sdn Bhd?
What is the monthly salary of Mr Shane Nollan and Mr Andy Holmes?
Instead of MAS filling up the post of Commercial Director, AJ and/or Rashdan, who is Amok’s crony, chose to allow the appointment of Mr Shane Nollan, whose experience according to the record is just a Commercial Consultant of PlaneConsult, as MAS Acting Commercial Director!
Yours truly has been told that Mr Shane Nollan is a very powerful officer in MAS and is able to tell our local officers what to do. As the acting Commercial Director, he was also very much involved in the acceptance of the 30,000 ArAsia X Sdn Bhd’s passengers after AirAsia X Sdn Bhd has terminated its London, Paris and Mumbai routes. Now the number should be higher because of the termination of its Christchurch route.
Of course, MAS should assist all Malaysians as it has been doing all the time like ferrying students back to Malaysia as its national service during the Egyptians upheaval last year. AirAsia X Sdn Bhd has announced that it will ensure that these 30,000 passengers will still be able to fly to their respective destinations at no extra cost. This means that AirAsia X Sdn Bhd will be responsible for all extra cost incurred. It was a very responsible act on the part of AirAsia X Sdn Bhd. It should be applauded for it!
Yours truly would like to believe that under the said secret share swap and CCF, MAS is not contractually bound to absorb such category of passengers at no extra cost. The questions have been asked by so many readers in yours truly Blog are:
Was the fare charged based on the official published fare of MAS or special fare being given to AirAsia X Sdn Bhd?
Since it was the usual practice in such cases that MAS will insist on a bank guarantee to pay for the additional cost of fare for this category of passengers. Did AirAsia X Sdn Bhd provide a bank guarantee to undertake to pay for the additional fares for the said 30,000 passengers? Or Did MAS waive the requirement of such bank guarantee contrary to its past policy and practice?
Perhaps MAS staff can help to provide answer to the above questions.
The next issue is PlaneConsult’s “Working Method” on: “… local individuals have already been identified and recommended as suitable to assume permanent roles within a restructured MAS”.
Was it as a result of this “Working Method” that on 1-2-2012 MAS appointed En Azhari Dhalan as Head of MAS Engineering and 14-2-2012 En Rozman Omar as CFO of MAS. Both were again COINCIDENTALLY from AirAsia.
Yours truly would very much like to believe that these two ex-AirAsia’s officers were head hunted and it so happened that they were from AirAsia! Rumours have it Ms Kathelene Tan from AirAsia will also be also be going over to MAS. Hopefully it was just rumors. Amok should be asking himself now that why the PlaneConsult’s “Working Method” have created so many coincidences as far as the employment of ex-AirAsia high ranking officers to MAS!
Lets hope that in the very near future MAS will not COINCIDENTALLY identify more local individuals to head its departments permanently who happen to be from AirAsia! Yours truly has been told that there will be a few more but yours truly hope that it was mere rumour!
The Malaysian Competition Commission (MYCC) should investigate into the above to ensure that the above facts do not contribute to stop competition between MAS and AirAsia, which will be against public interest and the Anti-Competition Act 2010. Please read in HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE.
Yours truly has also tabled many Parliamentary questions on the said secret share swap and CCF in HERE. Question No. 2 of the parliamentary questions on MYCC investigation into the said secret share swap is on the Parliamentary Order Paper for today Questions Time. The Answer will be published in yours truly blog as soon as yours truly got the answer.
Yours truly calls upon the Government to revisit the said secret share swap and CCF and reverse it in the light of all the decisions made after Rashdan, the Amok’s crony, was appointed to head MAS on 9-8-2011.
The next posting will be on the famous WAU, the pet project of Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar and his crony, Rashdan, when they were both in BinaFikir Sdn Bhd. It will be about another scheme similar to the disposal of 70% share of MAS Catering Sdn Bhd to Gubahan Saujana Sdn Bhd, a company controlled by Datuk Hj Ibrahim bin Hj Ahmad Badawi.
Please also read an interesting article by OutSyed The Box entitled “Datuk Seri Perdana Menteri “Ripping off” of MAS Part 3″ in HERE.