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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: Taking Off

Mar 01, 2024 09:14AM ● By Donna Walker

Boeing Captures Orders for 49 787 Dreamliners

Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Thai Airways announced the flagship carrier placed an order for 45 787 Dreamliners as the airline looks to modernize and grow its widebody fleet and international network.


Officials said Thai Airways selected the 787-9 to support its long-term strategy to renew and expand its fleet with more efficient jets, as well as open new routes to support high demand for air travel across Southeast Asia.


"To accomplish our company's and the national carbon neutral goals by 2050, the 45 new Boeing 787 Dreamliners will be equipped with GEnx engines, which are known for their cutting-edge technology and reduced environmental impact," said Chai Eamsiri, Thai Airways CEO. "Furthermore, we are confident that the acquisition of the 787 Dreamliners will ultimately benefit our customers and support the growth of our country's economy."


Thai Airways flies widebody jets ─ including 777s and 787s ─ to nearly 60 domestic and international destinations, including the Middle East, Asia and Europe.


With more 787-9s in their fleet, the airline will operate more efficiently, as the Dreamliner family reduces fuel use and emissions by up to 25 percent compared to the airplanes it replaces, officials said.


"Thai Airways' strategic investment in the 787 Dreamliner builds on our long-standing partnership and signifies the airline's commitment to operate a modern, efficient and flexible fleet," said Brad McMullen, Boeing senior vice president of Commercial Sales and Marketing.


McMullen added, "This order will support Thai Airways' ability to meet demand, foster tourism and trade, and create further opportunities for this carrier."


The order, which was finalized in December 2023, was listed as unidentified on Boeing's Orders & Deliveries website. 


Boeing's 2023 Commercial Market Outlook for Southeast Asia projects that the region's widebody fleet will see a three-fold increase over 20 years, with growing demand for nearly 800 airplanes including passenger jets such as Boeing's 787 Dreamliner family and 777X, as well as freighter models.


At 20 feet (6 meters) longer than the 787-8, the 787-9 will enable Thai Airways to fly nearly 20 percent more passengers farther and build on routes first opened by the 787-8.


Since revenue service began in 2011, the 787 family has launched more than 390 new nonstop routes around the world.


Boeing's partnership with Thai Airways and support of the country's aviation industry span more than 60 years.


Boeing's presence in Thailand includes offices in Bangkok and support for important causes including STEM education, programs for people with disabilities and sustainable livelihood through permaculture methods. 


Separately, Boeing and Royal Brunei Airlines announced the airline's purchase of four 787 Dreamliners to renew its widebody fleet.


Officials said Royal Brunei Airlines' selection of the 787-9 supports the airline's long-term growth strategy, sustainability goals and focus on passenger comfort.


"The forthcoming arrival of the 787-9 Dreamliner symbolizes a bold step forward in our ongoing journey toward innovation and excellence," said Sabirin bin Haji Abdul Hamid, CEO of Royal Brunei Airlines.


"Royal Brunei Airlines has been operating the 787-8 for the last 10 years and this order will ensure we continue with a product that our customers have come to enjoy. In our constant effort to offer unparalleled service matched with the highest safety standards to our guests, the new fleet will allow us the potential to tap into new growth areas, strengthening our market appeal and enabling us to provide a superior travel experience to our guests."


Royal Brunei Airlines currently operates five 787-8s, serving destinations in Asia, Australia, the Middle East and the United Kingdom.


Officials said the 787-9, which can carry nearly 20 percent more passengers than the 787-8 and fly 14,010 km (7,565 nautical miles), will support the carrier's growing capacity needs on these medium- and long-haul routes.


Boeing South Carolina is the home of the 787 Dreamliner, where the full cycle of 787 Dreamliner production occurs. Teammates fabricate, assemble and deliver the 787-8, 787-9, and 787-10 to customers all over the world.

Upstate SC Alliance Holds Annual Meeting

 An estimated 600 people attended the Upstate SC Alliance’s annual meeting Feb. 29, 2024, at the Greenville Convention Center, where officials of the economic development organization reviewed their global engagement and business recruitment in 2023.


Alliance figures show 55 projects were announced last year, with $2.1 billion in capital investment and 4,455 new jobs. Included were 17 international projects.


Formed in 2000, the Upstate South Carolina Alliance is a public/private regional economic development organization representing 10 counties in the northwest corner of South Carolina.


Officials say the Alliance puts the Upstate on the radar for businesses through a mix of visits to companies in target markets and tradeshows, marketing to key people and building business bonds.    


Speakers at the annual meeting included Kelly Coakley, director of marketing and communications for the South Carolina Department of Commerce, who outlined Commerce’s new Launch to Legacy branding effort to support industry recruitment and retention, and Alex Frei, senior vice president, Advisory & Transaction Services Location Incentives for CBRE, who has helped a defense manufacturer and food producer locate in the Upstate.


Before joining Commerce in 2022, Coakley was director of Strategic Communications for the South Carolina Department of Administration, where she led the initiative to establish South Carolina’s first state government recruitment brand, SC Careers. 


She also collaborated with multiple agencies to launch accelerateSC, the state’s Covid response and revitalization website and social media presence.


Coakley also has 13 years of television news experience, including as a former anchor at WIS and a former anchor/reporter at WYFF-TV.


Frei is widely recognized by major economic development agencies as one of the top site selectors and incentives negotiators in the U.S., having negotiated more than $2 billion in state and local incentives packages for his clients.  

Jeff Wilson Named Trident Health's New President

Trident Health has named Jeff Wilson as the health system’s new president. He will also serve as CEO of Trident Medical Center.


Trident Health employs nearly 3,000 and has a medical staff of nearly 800 physicians.


Next year, Trident Medical Center will celebrate its 50th anniversary.


Trident Medical Center is a 321-bed major medical center providing a comprehensive range of services and specialties, including a 24-hour emergency room (ER) and a Level II Trauma Center. 


For more than 40 years, Trident Medical Center has served patients and families in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties.


Wilson joins Trident Health from Methodist Hospital Stone Oak in San Antonio, TX, where he served as Chief Executive Officer for the past 2 1/2 years.


In his time there, he led more than $34M in Operating Rooms and Cath Lab expansion projects and a $78M tower expansion to improve the facility and enhance hospital services.


“Jeff’s skilled in creating and communicating a vision for growth and supporting the teams who’ll execute it,” said Hugh Tappan, president, HCA Healthcare South Atlantic Division.


Tappan added, “It’ll be invaluable as Trident Health continues to add specialties and expand access to care like the health system did last year with the opening of Live Oak Mental Health & Wellness and James Island Emergency and will do in other neighborhoods in the future.”


Wilson joined HCA Healthcare in 2005, where he’s held a variety of leadership positions in several Richmond, VA area hospitals, as well as serving as vice president of Orthopedics and Spine in HCA’s Capital Division.


Before his most recent role, he was CEO of the Methodist Hospital Specialty and Transplant, recognized as the No. 1 live donor kidney transplant program in the U.S.


Trident Health’s acute care hospitals were recently awarded their second consecutive America’s 250 Best Hospitals award from Healthgrades and second consecutive “A” grade by Leapfrog.


The health system includes:


* Trident Medical Center (321-beds)

* Summerville Medical Center (124-beds)

* Live Oak Mental Health & Wellness (60 beds)

* Brighton Park Emergency

* Centre Pointe Emergency

* James Island Emergency

* Moncks Corner Medical Center.


And, Trident Health has announced plans to build a 50-bed hospital on Johns Island, South Carolina.


Wilson earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and government from The University of Kansas; a master’s degree in Health/Health Care Administration/Management from Virginia Commonwealth University; and a Certificate of Management, Public Health/Business from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.


He’s known for his hands-on approach to recruiting surgeons and specialists. His efforts led to increased surgical volume by nearly 15 percent, year-over-year, and a projected 1,000 additional neurosurgical cases for 2024.


Wilson also has a strong track record of supporting the community by building partnerships and serving on the boards of nonprofit organizations.


He currently serves on the board of directors and is chair of the Governance Committee for the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute.

How to Spot An Imposter Social Security Social Media Account

By Dawn Bystry, Associate Commissioner, Office of Strategic and Digital Communications


Do you know how to spot fake Social Security social media accounts? The tips below will help you protect yourself and your family.


How fraudsters create imposter accounts

Fraudsters create imposter social media pages and accounts using Social Security-related images and jargon, making them appear as if they’re associated with or endorsed by us. They also create imposter social media pages of Social Security and OIG officials, such as the Commissioner or the Inspector General.


Protect your personally identifiable information

We will never ask for sensitive information through social media as these channels are not secure. Sometimes, users are asked to enter their financial information, Social Security number (SSN), or other sensitive information. This is a red flag, and often an indication of a fraudulent account.


How to spot a fake social media account

Identifying an imposter account may seem difficult at first, but there are a few things you can look for right away. You will want to focus on the following:


* How many people follow the imposter page. In most cases, fake pages have a very low number of followers as compared to Social Security’s official page.

* Improper punctuation.

* Links to pages not on

* Advertisements for forms or other Social Security documents.

* Incorrect social media handle. To view the list of our official social media channels, we encourage you to visit our Social Media webpage.


Please report suspected Social Security imposter scams — and other Social Security fraud — to the OIG’s website.


You can find more information about scams on our webpage, Protect Yourself from Scams.

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