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updated: 8/10/2012 1:42 PM

Boeing fills sales chief job

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Bloomberg News

Boeing Co. named John Wojick as the planemaker's new sales chief, filling a post vacant for more than a month after a management shake-up in June.

A 32-year veteran, Wojick began his career as an aerospace engineer and led regional sales units including Latin America and India before becoming North American sales vice president. He will now be vice president of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

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Ray Conner, who had been leading commercial sales for less than a year, was named president of the business when Jim Albaugh decided to step down for personal reasons June 26, the week before the industry gathered in England for the Farnborough air show.

Wojick's promotion "suggests elements of continuity within the Boeing leadership team that would allow Ray Conner and his team to move forward rapidly and with maximum effectiveness," said Michel Merluzeau, a consultant with G2 Solutions in Kirkland, Washington.

Wojick will be the ninth Boeing sales chief since John Leahy became chief commercial officer at Airbus SAS 18 years ago. Toulouse, France-based Airbus has led Boeing in annual deliveries since 2003, though the U.S. planemaker predicted it will reclaim the top spot this year as it boosts production.

Boeing has won more orders than Airbus in 2012 after the company began selling the 737 Max, an upgrade to its best- selling 737 that's meant to challenge the Airbus A320neo that dominated purchases last year. The Chicago-based company is also considering offering a stretch version of the new, composite- plastic 787 as well as an improved 777 wide-body jet.

Boeing fell 0.2 percent to $74.11 at 2:02 p.m. in New York. The shares previously gained 1.3 percent this year.

Brad McMullen, who led Japan and Oceania Sales, will succeed Wojick in the North American post.

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