The Business On: Colin Matthews, Chief executive, BAA
Tuesday 21 December 2010
The Grinch who stole Christmas?
That's a bit harsh. Mr Matthews may run the company in charge of Heathrow, but he doesn't make the weather. And while BAA has come in for criticism about its response to the cold snap – why couldn't it get more flights away, or at least communicate with passengers more effectively? – the snow has been unusually heavy.
Still, he's the man in charge
True – and he hasn't been doing too much talking. Whilst the likes of British Airways boss Willie Walsh have been facing the cameras very regularly, BAA has mostly beenleaving the interviews to its media relations staff, though Mr Matthews did surface yesterday.
Maybe he's been out shovelling snow and de-icing planes?
Maybe. Mr Matthews is a calm, practical man, best known in business circles for having taken on a string of troubleshooting jobs at companies with problems.
Not on this scale, though?
Well, he had to handle the fall-out of a Serious Fraud Office investigation at Severn Trent when he was chief executive at the water company and he was brave enough to restructure himself out of a job during his period running the conglomerate Hays. He's had his fair share of fun at BAA, too – it is in the process of being broken up by regulators and has failed in abattle to win permission for a third runway at Heathrow.
The trouble with these company bosses is they're all finance guys
Not Mr Matthews. He's an engineer by trade and describes himself as an "obsessive" about the operational side of the businesses he runs. Make no mistake: aware that this crisis threatens his reputation as a safe pair of hands, and embarrassed about the way Britain's biggest airport has turned into a refugee centre, he'll be smarting just now.
Sounds like he needs a break?
If only he could get away, figuratively or literally. Still, the snow and ice will thaw eventually, so maybe Mr Matthews might find a bit of time to indulge his passion: skiing.
- 1 The black and blue dress: Makers considering a white and gold version
- 2 Husband and wife die holding hands within hours of each other after 67 years of marriage
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 4 The remarkable archaeological underwater discovery that could open up a new chapter in the study of European and British prehistory
- 5 Saudi Muslim cleric claims the Earth is 'stationary' and the sun rotates around it
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Putin critic may have been murdered by Islamic extremists, says president-led committee
Stephen Hawking's wife Jane Wilde on their marriage breakdown: 'The family were left behind'
British are sexually uptight, dirty and drink too much – according to Spanish book
PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
White and gold or blue and black – what colour is the dress? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Russia's roadmap for annexing eastern Ukraine 'leaked from Vladimir Putin's office'
iJobs Money & Business
£40000 - £50000 per annum + pro rata: SThree: SThree Group have been well esta...
£30000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Established in 1999, a highly r...
£250-£300 Day Rate: Jemma Gent: Are you a qualified accountant with strong exp...
£230 - £260 Day Rate: Jemma Gent: Do you want to stamp your footprint in histo...