Crain’s Headlines: Boeing Removes CEO From Chairman Role

Wall Street seemed reassured Monday by the news that Boeing has stripped its CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, of his title as chairman of the board. It’s a move that the Chicago-based aerospace giant says will allow him to focus more attention on resolving the crisis that has engulfed the company’s 737 Max jetliner in the wake of two fatal crashes that forced its worldwide grounding. Boeing stock climbed in early trading Monday before settling back down toward opening levels by mid-afternoon.

Lead director David Calhoun, a senior executive at Blackstone Group, will take over as non-executive chairman.

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In other Chicago business news:

Meanwhile, Bloomberg is reporting that WeWork, one of the largest users of office space in Chicago, is considering a bailout that will hand control of the co-working giant to one of its largest investors.

Japanese investment giant SoftBank is already the majority shareholder of WeWork, but the proposed deal would shore up its control of the startup, which is facing a severe shortage of cash. WeWork’s board and backers are also weighing another option: JPMorgan Chase is leading discussions about a $5 billion debt package.
And finally, the investors who redeveloped the former Tokyo Hotel into a budget-friendly hospitality option have cashed out.

Crain’s reports the River North hotel, which now operates as the Freehand Hotel Chicago, has been sold as part of a $400 million deal.

The British private-equity firm Queensgate Investments bought the hotel at 19 E. Ohio St. and three other Freehand-brand properties from a venture of New York’s Sydell Group and the private-equity arm of California billionaire Ron Burkle. Those investors bought the building in 2013 for just $13.5 million.

Crain’s Headlines is a joint production between WTTW and Crain’s Chicago Business. It airs every Monday through Thursday on the WTTW News program “Chicago Tonight.” 

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