With a $3.2 billion Rockwell acquisition under its belt and a McDonnell Douglas takeover in the works, The Boeing Co. is gearing up for even more new business ventures.
Boeing announced last week the creation of a new group to establish commercial airplane-related entities and seek out joint ventures, acquisitions and other international business opportunities.
Negotiations already are under way on several significant new ventures, said Larry Clarkson, who assumed his new duties as president of Boeing Enterprises on Saturday.
Clarkson, formerly Boeing’s senior vice president of planning and international development, declined to elaborate, but said one of the deals could be finalized in the next six to eight weeks.
The decision to form a new entrepreneurial organization comes one month after Boeing announced it will acquire rival McDonnell Douglas in a $14 billion stock deal, which still must be approved by federal regulators and shareholders of both companies. And last year, Boeing purchased Rockwell International’s aerospace and defense businesses for $3.2 billion.
While the prospective joint ventures are not expected to be as big as a McDonnell Douglas purchase, Clarkson said some could involve “significant” international components, particularly focusing on the Asia-Pacific region.
Boeing is continuing to study the possibility of working with Asian manufacturers to build a new small jet that would seat about 100 passengers, but Clarkson said he did not expect any decisions in the near future.
He said Boeing’s new entrepreneurial organization will be able to seize profitable business opportunities that the company has tended to ignore in the past.
“This organization will be action-oriented and be able to move quickly,” Clarkson said.
The main objective, he said, is to have an independent unit to pursue business opportunities that will “increase shareholder value and grow the company.”
An example of the new entities to be created is Boeing Business Jets, a joint venture of Boeing and General Electric Co.
Boeing executives also have discussed taking advantage of the company’s massive database of world airline inventories to help carriers maintain service records, a business Clarkson said would fall within the new unit.
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