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Top 100 : 2008
INDUSTRY Wal King, 63 Executive Director, Managing Director and Chief Executive Offi cer, Leighton Holdings, Sydney Civil engineer, University of NSW L eighton Holdings is the parent company of Australia’s largest project development and contracting group including Thiess, John Holland, Leighton Properties, Leighton Contractors, Leighton International and Leighton Asia. These fi rms undertake work in telecommunications, engineering and infrastructure, building and property, mining and resources, and environmental services markets. Operations span projects in Australia, New Zealand, East and Southeast Asia and the Middle East. “The Group’s outlook remains very positive and we see an excess of opportunities in resources, infrastructure and property, both in Australia and across Asia,” Wal King said. The fi rm has 30,400 staff. Last fi nancial year its turnover was $11.9 billion and work in hand currently stands at $28.1 billion. King is regarded as one of the most experienced and successful people in the construction industry, having been CEO of Leighton for 21 years. He is also president of the Australian Constructors Association. In 2004 he was appointed an Offi cer of the Order of Australia. Marius Kloppers, 45 Chief Executive Offi cer of BHP Billiton, Melbourne Chemical engineer, University of Pretoria, South Africa B HP Billiton, the world’s largest diversifi ed resources company, recorded revenue of $40.3 billion in the 2006/2007 fi nancial year. The company has 39,000 employees and some 60,000 contractors working for it in more than 100 operations in 25 countries. Dr Marius Kloppers has been CEO of BHP Billiton since last October. He immediately embarked on one of the biggest takeover bids in mining by making an offer for Rio Tinto. While Rio Tinto’s response so far has been negative saying the offered price was too low, the take-over bid is still on the table. Kloppers joined Billiton in 1993 and his career steps included chief marketing offi cer, chief commercial offi cer and group president for non-ferrous materials. He has extensive knowledge of the mining industry and of BHP Billiton’s operations. In addition to his chemical engineering degree, Kloppers has a PhD in materials science from MIT, as well as an MBA. G eoff Knox assumed the role as CEO and managing director of the Down- er EDI Group in February this year. He was previously executive chairman of consulting fi rm Hatch Associates. The Downer EDI Group is a specialised supplier of infrastructure, mining, energy and consulting services in the Asia Pacifi c Region and the UK. It has more than 23,000 employees and an annual turnover of about $5.5 billion. Looking to the future for Downer EDI, Knox believes the intrinsic value of Geoff Knox, 50 CEO and Managing Director of Downer EDI, Sydney Civil engineer, University of Western Australia the company’s businesses can be unlocked further by concentrating on fundamentals. Knox was president of the former BHP Engineering and vice-president of BHP Project Management. He has also held senior roles with Baulderstone Hornibrook, Costain Australia and White Industries. Outside work he spends time with his family and enjoys sailing and fi shing. 40 ENGINEERS AUSTRALIA JUNE 2008 Book 1.indb 40 Book 1.indb 40 4/6/08 15:16:21 4/6/08 15:16:21