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TIM ARVIER: It is my pleasure to introduce Andrew Liveris as our guest today. A man, many of you would have heard of and many of, you know, Andrew Liveris is the President of the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games Organising Committee. A proud Australian with strong ties to Queensland. He moved to Queensland as a teenager and studied at Brisbane State High School before graduating with a degree in chemical engineering from the University of Queensland. It is here at the University of Queensland, that Mr Liveris recently established an Academy for Leadership and Innovation to nurture leaders for the 21st century. Now do I know that in recognition of that a building was recently named after Mr. Liveris as well, a great honour. His career at Dow Chemical spanned over 42 years with roles in manufacturing, engineering sales, marketing business and general management across three different continents. This culminated in Andrew serving as chairman and CEO for 15 years, for an organization, that employed over 60,000 people across 160 countries. He's currently chairman of Lucid Motors and BlackRock long-term Private capital and director of IBM and the Minderoo Foundation and is also a member of the B-Team. Mr. Liveris has significant experience and relationships globally across the public-private and philanthropic sectors and is dedicated to making the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games, memorable and successful for all, please welcome Mr Liveris to the stage. 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS :Thank you Tim. It's Andrew by the way, Mr Liveris sounds like my father or something. I'm gobsmacked and really pinch-yourself-moment of my life that I'm here in front of so many you. Welcome. I really just can't believe that we've got this many people here and I really appreciate the Queensland Media Club organizing this.

 

I'd like to start by acknowledging and saying hello to our first Nations people of Meanjin or Brisbane home of the Turrbal and Yuggerapeoples peoples, and their Elders. Past present and emerging who have cared for this land of 60,000 years. I had the pleasure of meeting with some of the elders in June, in my first stakeholder meetings. My very first ones on my new role in Brisbane 2032 where we discussed the quest for truth-telling. With that said, some families of the Turrbal and Yuggera People have requested I share the following messages from that meeting.

 

The Ruska Family represented by the Yabarabul Elders Cultural Heritage and Languages Aboriginal Corporation said: “The opportunity for First Nations people cannot be overlooked.  Economic opportunities must be delivered, and environmental management is critical to leaving a real legacy for First Nations from the Olympics and Paralympics.”

 

The Sandy family reminded me that: “the Olympics and Paralympics will come and go, however, the importance of managing the environmental impacts of the Games, including land conversation and management, is of particular importance and cannot be overlooked or underestimated.”  

 

The Barambah Family said: “the potential opportunities to support not only the Turrbal and Yuggerapeoples but all First Nations is fundamental to build social and economic opportunities and well-being.” I come from the Northern Territory and I also come from Queensland and I feel it is very important that our citizens of the First Nations people's be heard. 

 

Thank you also to those leaders from across all levels of government who have joined us today.  Minister for Tourism, Innovation and Sport and Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympics and Paralympics Sporting Engagement, Sterling Hinchcliffe. It's really a pleasure to work with you Sterling and we’ll have a lot more to say about that later in my talk. And the Leader of the Opposition in Queensland, David Crisafulli is here. Thank you for being here David. Federal Member for Moreton and fellow board member whom I just met in person, Graham Perrett, thank you for being here and for being on our board Graham. I believe the Lord Mayor is here. I haven't sighted you yet, warm welcome. Nice to have you here. We've spent a lot of time on the phone, over the last few months, and really gotten to enjoy building a relationship with Adrian Schrinner of course, he also chairs the Southeast Queensland Council of Mayors, which is my very next point. 

 

The Mayors, Deputy Mayors and Councillors from Moreton Bay, Toowoomba, Lockyer Valley Scenic Rim, Noosa, Logan, Redland, Sommerset, Sunshine Coast and Mount Isa Councils, thank you for being here. It shows the significance of this event for all of us from the mayor's point of view. And of course, I have my fellow Brisbane 2032 board members who are here. And welcome to the superstars of Brisbane 2032 our Paralympians and Olympians all of you who are in the room. Thank you. We're doing this for you and because of you, because we're so proud of the excellence you've shown on the field in the swimming pool or wherever you have shown it, thank you. 

I probably can already show you how excited I am at doing this job. I absolutely totally, when I got the call almost had to stop in my tracks and I did I think and my wife said, you got to do this -and I'm doing it. I'm absolutely a typical Aussie. I'm a sports addict, totally and the thought of bringing the world’s sporting elite together, here for a global competition of this scale, for me is just incredible. 

 

I'm also a businessman as Tim said in my resume I am so thrilled and seeing the prospect of seeing the world's biggest customers, and investors come to Australia and come to this region so that we can demonstrate something I know so well about us - Our ingenuity, our innovation and entrepreneurship. We can demonstrate that to the world. 

 

I'm also, as already indicated, a philanthropist, I believe in giving back, and I am committed to ensuring that these Games unite our global family. Yes, our global family at a time when it's needed so much and benefit Australians irrespective of where they live, what they earn. It's essential we show that we are a true first-world nation and lead from the front. It's an obvious point and a critical one that when you're planning something like this a new Olympic and Paralympic games, you do get the opportunity that calling card, to meet with International Olympic and Paralympic Committees and other OCOGs from around the world as they do what they've done, do what they're doing, to shape the future of the global sporting events industry. 

 

It's primarily an avenue to recognise, of course, has already indicated, excellence in sport, but it's also the event that brings humanity together. It is the event that does that. And with it comes the opportunity to recognise those most important of human attributes - of resilience persistence determination, humility, grit and courage.

 

The Games in Brisbane 20:32, allow us to think about the impact we want to make to our society, to our economy, and to our planet. So what can these games are the future really look like and how do we shape the games to celebrate our indeed, local context? How do we in fact reflect the diverse, dynamic, modern and increasingly digital society that we live in today that will sustain us in 2032 and beyond? How do we ensure that the games are keeping up with society as we know it today from the digital native that is in their teens to the baby boomers like me, who are experiencing a very connected retirement? How can we raise the bar lead the way and inspire people around the world to embrace a new way of living, working and playing through the paradigm of sport? 

 

Well, I've met with my International Olympic and Paralympic Committee executive colleagues earlier this month to discuss the future of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, including how we optimise and innovate across Games delivery, Games experience, sustainability, impact and Legacy. And we agreed firstly sport must remain at the core of games delivery. Secondly, the Games should always reflect current societal standards, leading to a state of constant evolution and critically the choices we make on Games delivery should adapt and reflect the local surroundings of any games, drawing on the strength of the region. Very important outcomes from the first get-together of the Olympic family, in this new norm. The question I have for you today is a critical one, how will Brisbane 2032 shape the games of the future? And to answer this important question it is useful for us to explore the past, understand our present, and then decide together to imagine this future.

 

When I first took on this role as President of Brisbane 2032, I talked about the importance of listening and learning from all of society and its constituent parts about what makes a great Olympics and Paralympics games so we can apply what we learn to Brisbane 2032. I've spent the last few recent months meeting with the Games leaders of the world. I've met with the leaders of London, 2012, Paris 2024, Milano Cortina 2026, LA 2028 and of course, the International Olympic and Paralympic committee. These leaders have generously shared, their ideas, insights and experiences giving us the advantage of their hindsight and some cases and foresight in others. 

 

The advice I have received relates to the importance of keeping sport at the centre of our planning and building everything out around it, which is also the key theme for all of them. And then of course, to the foundational planning workforce design, business planning, and how to create a high-performance workforce. It also relates to having operational plans, to ensure we meet our sustainability targets and deliver climate-positive Games, and the commercial elements of the games, all of that makes sense, but how now do we lift the bar?

 

How do we create pathways for our athletes after their sporting careers? How do weave into the fabric of these Games opportunities to celebrate, recognize and benefit, our First Nations people and people of diverse backgrounds? How do we attract the world to Australia in 2032, to Brisbane in this region, and use the event to lift our country's brand our state brand and our regional brand higher on the world stage? And how do we serve the environment to encourage visitors to come for the sport, stay for the business and make the investment? And remember the experience fondly? 

 

I took great inspiration from the experience of the cities that recently hosted the Games. I didn't mention them in my opening, but I listened very carefully to what Tokyo 2020 experienced. As, you know, a Games under tremendous adversity. This was a Games that by necessity had to be agile, to optimize and be ready to change tack due to the pandemic, it was significantly innovative as a result in Games delivery. For example, 81 per cent of their competition venues used temporary or existing infrastructure. The Olympic Village became Japan's first hydrogen, powered town. Five thousand metals were created using 100% recycled materials, including 6.2 million mobile phones, and seventy-nine thousand tons of donated electronics. Beijing for the first time in their history in the history of the Games had all venues powered by renewable energy and income from ice and snow tourism exceeded 390 billion US dollars in the 2020/2021 snow season that followed. These are remarkable results and it came down to three important factors. The first- planning, the second teamwork and the third collaboration. They used a deep knowledge and experience available to them. They worked out how to optimize their local industry and the strengths of their particular communities and their economies. And they innovated.

 

So during these conversations, I also took the opportunity to learn about their various business and funding models of their Olympics and Paralympics Games. Wind your mind back to 2012 and London, Usain Bolt triumphed yet again. The legacy of Elephant Park was delivered and James Bond escorted Her Majesty, our dearly departed Queen into the opening ceremony by parachute. And the Games business model was run by an organizing committee and an Olympic Development Authority that was governed by the federal and local governments largely using public funds. Now, transport yourself to the Future and LA 2028, swimming pools, movie stars but an entirely privately funded business model but overseen by a joint organizing committee and Olympic and Paralympic Committee entity in partnership with the city of Los Angeles. This is the same bit of business model that was implemented for their 1984 games and works very efficiently, efficiently in their huge domestic market. 

So Brisbane, 2032 in my mindset listening very carefully is LA 2028 and London 2012 combined. We do indeed have government input and oversight which also requires and it's requiring the organizing committee's finances to be cost-neutral. Effectively making us privately funded. You can't get there without the private funding model. That's why we're the hybrid. Does it sound complex? You bet. But I'm built for complex. 

 

Sure these are clear lines of responsibility that are clearly defined for all of you to know in the Olympic host contract, which we have signed, all of us, to ensure we deliver on time. And on budget. And the organizing committee. It's all in the name. The organizing committee is responsible for organizing the Games. As the owners of the Brisbane 2032 brand, we will coordinate and track the progress of all of our Games delivery partners. Most of whom are on the board and contributors to ensure that we continue together to deliver one of the most important events in the history of Queensland Australia. 

 

We are the custodian as the organising committee of the Olympic host contract and the IOC and IPCs mandate to Brisbane 2032. We will facilitate collaboration across all stakeholders, including all levels of government the Australian Olympic Committee and Paralympics, Australia. And some of you organizing committees, operational responsibilities include the Games planning process, raising revenue is already implied through sponsorship, philanthropy, ticketing Brisbane, 2032 merchandise, managing the temporary overlay, and operation of the venues, security, recruiting the Brisbane, 2032 volunteers. And the other elements that bring the games to life. The event itself - Games delivery partners like the Queensland and Australian governments and councils also have a significant role in delivering the venues, the athlete villagers and the supporting infrastructure in coordination with the organizing committee to ensure Southeast Queensland is games, ready. The Queensland government is currently in the process of leading a piece of work to determine the structure of how the venues and infrastructure will be delivered. And this will complement the existing organizing committee governance that is now already in place. Together, we will deliver Brisbane, 2032, it's the only way.

 

When we do, what will it be remembered for? What do we want Brisbane 2032 to be known for? I've done, as I've already indicated a fair amount of travel in my short time on this role. I've been around the world a lot, as the famous song says I believe.

 

Southeast Queensland is one of the world's best-kept secrets. Names like Brisbane, Mooloolaba Maroochydore, Gold Coast, Noosa, others believe it or not do not penetrate the psyche and consciousness of the world's tourists and investors. I know that is  hard for you to believe, but they don't. However and without any doubt, we are increasingly a hub for Innovation and Entrepreneurship driving economic and employment opportunities, we’re a multi-generational region. I've said it before and I'll say it again. Southeast Queensland's superpower is our ingenuity, our innovation and entrepreneurship our hospitality and indeed our lifestyle. 

 

We want people to come well before the torch is lit and to stay long after the flame is out. And to help us communicate that and our unique blend to the world in an increasingly noisy and crowded Market. We need to deliver the Brisbane 2032 brand. The brand unites our message, it gives us an opportunity to remind the world why they should come to Brisbane and this region and stay and do business here. The brand has a role to play in doing some of the heavy lifting on delivering cost-neutral games. We want to build a compelling brand that will attract a premium for merchandising and broadcasting sponsorship and drive ticket sales. 

 

We want to create a clearly defined brand that articulates our unique selling point as a Games and as a region. It will be critical to separate ourselves from other mega sporting events in the market. And I want to be very clear here. The work we're doing on the brand is not just for Brisbane 2032. That would be limiting, Queensland's potential. Why would we do that? 

 

The work we do on the brand will shape our ambitions for the impact and legacy. The Games leave Queensland for the many coming decades for our youth and our next generation of athletes and for our citizens. And what might that legacy look like the Queensland government with support of Minister Hinchcliffe right there, has been leading the development of the legacy planning process and coordinating the games delivery partners across each level of government with their participation? Our organizing committee is pleased to be involved in this process and will continue to be an eager collaborator, ensuring we play our role in, delivering the elements of the legacy plan that we are responsible for, in line with our obligations under the Olympic Host Contract. Some of these areas include Games Delivery commercial partnerships and economic growth, sustainability, youth, and sport engagement, inclusivity, diversity, and beyond, this is critical in these early years to define, not only the legacy that we want to leave behind, but the pre-games legacy, the impact that we want the Games to have starting now. 

 

I am confident our colleagues in the state and federal governments who are responsible for venues and infrastructure delivery will ensure every dollar spent in this space will be done so, with Legacy in mind, and of course, the physical landscape will evolve as venues and transport are upgraded and other changes are made. But the big difference with these games is they need to fit the city. We do not want to rebuild the city to fit the Games. This is the new norm for the International Olympic Committee that has been set for us. This is what we signed up to do. We are unique in being the first Games to be given that Charter. Even LA doesn't have it. On a smaller scale, the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games is a fantastic example in our own backyard of how to deliver a mega-sporting event on a global stage and then have a legacy of venues and infrastructure that fits the ongoing needs of that community with the Gold Coast venues now in use in almost every day of the year. 

 

And beyond the hard infrastructure also, the soft and social infrastructure is what I want to focus on for a moment. Brisbane 2032 will encourage any member of our community to get involved in sport. Whatever the level, whatever the intensity or the duration our ambition is to get Australians moving. Brisbane 2032 gives us a chance to introduce a wider audience to our world-class arts and cultural communities. We have an opportunity to showcase the next generation of artists, authors and performers who carry and capture the spirit of our nation. 

 

The Games also gives us a vital opportunity to bring people together and demonstrate the benefits of living in a successful multicultural community. One of them is truly committed to diversity to belonging and to inclusion. We can use this next decade to ensure that once we reach the Paralympics in 2032 our society, celebrates people with disabilities and the necessary physical, financial and social mechanisms exist in order to do. Every person holds value and deserves recognition. And to establish a truly barrier free society of this kind we need to consciously develop and live, the plan that delivers this legacy. I'm also Keen to see us take advantage of the opportunity to games, provide to Brisbane and Queensland and Australia. And those Ambitions extend to improving the health and quality, of our economy of our environment and our society. 

 

We should have no aspiration less than that. And with a 10-year runway, yes, we have the luxury of time, but we won't waste it. When I spoke to our colleagues in LA recently,  on what a 10-year runway can offer from a sustainability perspective, they gave me a sense that both LA and Brisbane as Olympic and Paralympic, hosts are especially unique because we've been afforded this gift of 10 years. Be patient with us, be urgently patient, but be patient with us. 

 

The LA 28 Games plan is built on that 10-year runway, they are four years in. It's built on a radical reuse strategy, leveraging the very best the city has to offer - in stadiums and arenas and training facilities, and residences to host the games for LA. That means very few, if any new venues and leveraging, of course, the University of Southern California and UCLA facilities. And like LA 28, we will follow a 3 plus 3 plus 3 plus 1-year planning model. That adds up to 10 in case, you're wondering. Our first three years are very focused on the three E’s: Engagement education, and establishment. In this phase will be listening and learning from others. Educating our games-delivering partners and people across the nation on how games get delivered and establishing the organizing committee. So it's well-structured and ready to do the heavy lifting. This is a time to build momentum. It's a time to be light on cost and heavy on alignment, coordination and foundation building. 

 

It also be the time to develop new funding and revenue models working closely with the Australian Olympic Committee and Paralympics, Australia. This will set us up for success in the next three years stage of operational planning, where we will lock in the details of delivery and this is, of course, the beginning of execution and Games delivery where LA is right now. The final three years is what we call the Games readiness stage where we shift to detailed execution plans and implement them. Where we will source our volunteers, where will develop and implement all the logistics, we will have our sustainability and digital plans locked and loaded, we will sell tickets, we will be in heavy dialogue with all of our sports federations on delivery of the athletes and into the villages, we will have finalized all security arrangements and on and on and on and before you know it it'll be 2032. And the Olympics and Paralympics Games will be upon us in our final year. Games time. 

 

Ensuring we have a sustainability model, that oversees, the entirety of the organizing committee's operations will be critical to minimizing the negative environmental, and urban impact historically associated with Games operations. Beyond minimizing impact, with the huge advancements in technology innovations, these games can go even further. They can be a model, an exemplar for government, for business for sports and events industry and for civil society, 

 

When I was leader at Dow we became a top sponsor of the International Olympic Committee in 2010 and and we were the sustainability of partner that created the first green Olympics and Paralympics in London, in 2012. We delivered initiatives that minimized the impact of the Games on their environment, we introduced recycling technologies for building materials and water management as well as designing and implementing carbon emission and climate change strategies. That was 10 years ago. 

 

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development estimated that this is a four-point five trillion, dollar commercial prospect. In 2032 we can do way more. It's up for us to imagine this future and to want to achieve it. Now, you know, our reputation by background, I'm very passionate about value-added manufacturing. Wow. Imagine if we took this opportunity over the next 10 years to create world-leading technology and shortened the supply chains while building sovereign capability. I mean, the Queensland government's recent announcement on their 60 billion dollar investment into renewable energy is one strong step in that direction calling on industry to help to manufacture components locally. 

 

Australia can indeed deliver on the vision of advanced manufacturing center of excellence and do it  in this region and we can demonstrate by supplying the Games with those products and services that are made in Australia. It's within our remit, it's not beyond us, and it's doable. Our water can be recycled drones can transport and deliver lightweight topics and subjects even people, nanomaterials and metamaterials can transform manufacturing of all the facilities. And of course, volunteer uniforms and clothing can be recycled into products to be used. Our transport infrastructure can be free and include autonomous buses. The future is ours to shape. These are not dreams, these are possible realities.

 

Look at one sector for just a moment. The sports tech industry. Fast emerging, a critical space influencing, how athletes train and compete, how fans engage including virtual reality, and how they consume content, as well as how venues are developed. The Australian Sports Technology Network released their Sports Innovation report in July this year, which demonstrated has been exponential Sports Tech growth worldwide, the global Sports Tech industry is estimated to be worth now USD17.9 billion and is expected to grow by 17 and a half per cent per annum to US 40 billion dollars by 2026.How can we make it clear to the world that what we make here should be made here and what could we make here? Which brings me back to the Brisbane 2032 brand. We need to really build the brand to attract. 

 

It gices me great pleasure to announce today that were releasing the organizing committee's first, major package of work for Brisbane 2032 into the market, the delivery of the Brisbane 2032 brand. An invitation to offer goes live today by the Queensland Government's Q- Tenders website.

 

I invite all businesses to bring your best ideas and your best bids. And when you do, make sure you are Brisbane 2032 ready. Take the time to read the Brisbane, 2032 Olympic Host Contract, the Bid Documents and the International Olympic Committee's new norms expectations, which are all publicly available. Learn about the commitments we've made and think about how you can contribute. Show us your sustainability and ESG credentials. Tell us, if you have supply chain transparency, whether you undertake proactive engagement with our First Nations people and what your workforce, local employment and diversity profiles look like. Tell us what percentage of people with disabilities you've employed in your business. These are all questions we’re asking in this process and our future procurement processes over the coming years, will mimic that and reflect it. I encourage everyone to do your planning homework and be ready to put your best foot forward. We expect no less. This is the Olympic Games of 2032 we're talking about. 

 

This brand strategy will be one of our foundational planning pieces for the next 10 years. Future procurement packages from the Queensland Organizing Committee will support this planning work including knowledge, finance, people management systems, data capture systems and technology. This will help us ensure we have the right building blocks for the organization of the games, as a whole. I know something else you're waiting for is our CEO recruitment. We definitely need the right leader to assemble those building blocks. I need that CEO more than you can imagine. The last four months have been pretty busy. Things have been pretty busy. 

 

I know you are eagerly awaiting a name. I can tell you that the board is meeting this Friday, we are down to a handful of names. I'm not ready to share a name with you because we have a handful. The global search has been extensive, the quality of candidates, unbelievable. And I will tell you once the shortlisting is done and with interview process is done then within a very short period of time after the shortlist is looked at we will interview and then hopefully completed by November, can't come fast enough. No doubt the fervour of the rumour mill continues however I won't be saying any more to respect the candidates and maintain of course their privacy. And we really look forward to celebrating this appointment with you all and other appointments in the coming months. In the meantime please I encourage everyone please stay focused on the big picture. The global picture. Elevate lift your heads, look up. Brisbane 2032 is such an enormous opportunity for businesses across Australia to showcase their products and services to a global audience. 

 

As a good friend once said to me, our job is to plan the work and to work the plan. My team is energized by the enthusiasm from Brisbane, 2032 locally and globally. The size of this room is an indicator. What excites me more than anything else is that these Games are the ultimate collaboration in the national interest, in Australia's interest. We're coming together, first and foremost to celebrate sporting excellence and to provide an unforgettable sporting experience for our athletes. And for all athletes and their supporters. We’re also together as exceptional international hosts, generous with our time and our talent, to give those who join us as guests, who work alongside us as volunteers, and who watch us from the audience, a welcome the likes of which they had never experienced. Maybe in Sydney, but we’ll up that.

 

We're coming together to transform our businesses so they remain competitive, to remove the friction for our customers and visitors and ensure that our organizations remain in the service of our users, our environment, our customers, our stakeholders, our shareholders and our diverse communities. We’re coming together as innovators to research and deliver better solutions to problems we face and opportunities we can uncover to commercialize these ideas, to welcome customers and investors from around the world to scale our businesses globally. 

 

We're in a privileged position in that we are on target with our schedule, and are about four years ahead, in comparison to other Games. Most games in our delivery position are six years out, not 10. I welcome each and every person here to join us in making most of this tremendous opportunity. we have together. As the industry leaders of our state, I look forward to you, to help us manage and harness the strength of our communities. So that we're all taking the time to learn, plan, research and Implement before we run into full-speed and delivery mode. 

 

So here we are at the start of an incredible journey towards Brisbane 2032. A journey for sports addicts, for the business people, for philanthropists like me, a journey for researchers, innovators, entrepreneurs for investors. A journey for volunteers, workers, sponsors and for the hosts. A journey for the dreamers, designers performers for the storytellers for our athletes and our para-athletes.

 

A journey for Australians together.

 

Thank you. 

...

Q&A

 

TIM ARVIER : Thank you, Andrew. Thank you. And some very exciting ideas and concepts to look forward to. There will just now start question and answer session with the media will be asking questions from the back of the room and dessert is shortly. All the microphones are being taken down the back, and you just will start off with the news of the day, you're looking for the brand and that often incorporates, some of the most visible aspects of the games being the logos, the mascots I want to know what you're actually looking for in terms of the logos and mascots. You spoke a bit about what you're looking for in companies, but we've heard suggestions of the bin chicken,  the Ibis, there was a suggestion that the media table for maybe an eastern brown snake in the shape of the Brisbane River. That was my idea. But I was waiting to see if people laugh before I took credit for it. What are you actually looking for in terms of a mascot a logo, and what you want it to represent? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : I hadn't heard some of those are pretty cool. Well, I might have to go look at that chicken one. But I would tell you having been in Paris LA and even, you know, the previous Games like London, it's really impressive to see what's happening with the Olympic Movement. I really as a TOP sponsor lived, in the Olympics of yesteryear, but the Olympics of today, and tomorrow, have changed enormously and the pre-games Legacy aspect of it is huge. And The New Norms are huge. And what I said in the announcement there, therefore is huge on the brand question. This is not just a brand for the Olympics. It's a symbol of our future. And, and that's imagination. I mean, what do you see as the future of this part of the world? And I don't just mean Southeast Queensland. I mean, the entire State, and for that matter of the country now. Yes, I think we'll have to go with a mascot and a brand that identifies with our let's call it geography, most the ones you raised, but went beyond that and Paris has done a really good job. I mean, when you think Paris, I mean I just challenge you don't do it but write down a word that symbolizes Paris to you personally, for those of you who've had the privilege of going or know about it, you’ll write something that almost is central to culture and art and, and music and restaurants. And it's a feel, Paris is a feel, it’s a feel and what they're doing for their Games in particular, their opening ceremony, I mean, it just blows you away. And therefore, what they've done with their mascot in their brand is they've got Paris as the brand for their many features. And I think that's the part that I kind of sometimes. I said it in the talk, we're not Paris, right? So we're not London, we're not LA. Who are we? Answer that when you respond to the bid. And who do we want to be? Answer that, okay, and then design the symbols and emblems that go with it, not the other way around. 

 

And I think, yeah, I can, I can go with, you know, a surfboard or a koala bear, but that's just a symbol of our geography and our location. Who are we as a people? And what do we aspire to be? I think these are the sorts of things that the top brand marketers will tell you is really what matters today. And then I want to use that as I said in the talk to attract. The best analogy I have on brand building and awareness was what happened in Barcelona. Most of us didn't know much about Barcelona until the Olympics came. Barcelona now is a visited city. People go there for arts, for culture, for fun, for restaurants, as visited as Madrid. So don't we have kind of that as a part of the topic, people know, Australia for Sydney and Melbourne maybe? So how do we become the Barcelona of Australia with our symbols in our emblems?

 

TIM ARVIER : Secondly, this is a question that’s hugely important for the Queensland public, because the public in getting behind this Olympic bid, which offers so much opportunity, have been told it's going to be a cost-neutral Games and you touched on that in your speech that we've seen Olympic Games financially ruin cities before. And at the moment in Queensland, we're seeing massive challenges in the cost of infrastructure, the cost of building, the cost of construction. How possible do you think it will be to actually keep that promise to Queenslanders and have that low cost Olympic Games that won't bankrupt the state? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Yeah, so I've said in the talk, the three Es and education is was one of them. I will choose this moment to remind everyone what's in the Host Contract, which you're not experts on. And I don't expect you to be experts on but trust me, I've read every word and it's very important to understand that the state and this region won the bid in the new Norms because of who you are as a growth location.  Your governments, all of them need to invest in infrastructure for your growth, okay? The Olympics is an overlay on top of that, okay? It doesn't mean that it has to be done for the Olympics but because of the Olympics being here, we're going to make sure that there's coordination so that the infrastructure matches what the Olympics will want to do in all the standards I talked about digital sustainability and cost neutrality. Okay? Now but the Queensland government is going to spend money on infrastructure and the city council's have great ideas on infrastructure. They have to be looked at from the point of view of the growth of the state. This is a part of the country that is growing which is wonderful.

 

Well, what we’ve got to do with the Olympics is an overlay on top of that, why that investment in infrastructure, which is not on Olympics mandate, can create revenue because your infrastructure is going to be so great that companies are going to come want to come here and invest. That's what interests me from an Olympics point of view because I can go to those same companies and so not only you're going to invest in Queensland because of its great infrastructure but you're going to be a domestic sponsor, okay? Or you're going to be an international sponsor because we've got a raise of 1.6billion dollars of sponsorships. Now if you look at Australia's Fortune top 50 companies, we only have one per cent of those companies that are in the global 500. So we're not Japan, we're not the US. So we're going to have to do it by being innovative. And for me, that means I'm going to take advantage of the spending in infrastructure, which is not an OCOG responsibility. But we are definitely very, very connected to that spend. Now, as changes start to occur to the bid, then we have to be in the approval process for those changes. So, right now, the OHC, Olympic Host contract is the Bible and changes have to go through the process if there are changes to be made on venues and infrastructure. 

 

TIM ARVIER : big challenges for our politicians, there is a name in delivering that infrastructure. 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : There's big challenges for this entire project you have not taken on simple say that this is complex. But I look at the Ingenuity of Australians, we can do this. But is it going to be difficult to do this in a cost-effective way to satisfy all audiences? Only if it's a not-so-successful Games and we basically don't do a good job in the infrastructure. So guess what, we'll put the checks and balances in place, so that doesn't happen. 

 

TIM ARVIER : All good we might have some questions from the back. 

 

JOURNALIST : Thanks for the speech and remark that Mark Ludlow from the Financial Review. Obviously, if we look back to what happened with the Sydney Games that you mentioned in passing, that was seen as successful Games, I know, in the lead-up to that with so-called, you know, the Sydney organizing committee. There were lots of big egos and butting heads. In the lead-up to that including with SOCOG and the then state government. How are you going to avoid that this time around and just secondly as a supplementary on infrastructure delivery it's obviously the state governments going to be bankrolling that infrastructure? If projects do blowout in cost or time, who does the buck stop with you or the state government? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Great questions and I'll answer the second one first. I've always done my jobs with full accountability the buck stops with me, even if I'm not accountable. So, I take responsibility and accountability heavily, okay? Which means I may not be in control of it, but I'm going to definitely be engaged. So I know what's going on. So I can help get a better answer. I said, I'm a chemical engineer. I think we said in my resume. Chemical Engineers learn input, process output. Okay, if the output isn’t looking very good, we change the process. If we change the process and it means you've got to go to the table and work with personalities and egos. I'm used to that. I have worked in many political worlds, including the US. I'm sure you're going to get around to ask me some questions about Trump eventually, almost everyone does. I would definitely tell you that there are definitely people cycles, that will mean the politics of this will keep moving, but we can't come off plan. So, the first three years, massive input, great and changes to whatever we agreed to. There's a process for handling that and if some of it is noisy and gets to the press and makes headlines. So be it. We will work the process to get the better output. That's my accountability. And I take very seriously cost neutral the taxpayer on the OCOG budget, which means revenue raising. Which is a business. I ran a business. I know what a business means to raise revenue. I know what it means to sell to customers are now why customers don't buy when you have a bad product, they won't buy it. So get a better product. I know what it is to innovate. I will innovate, I will hire people and put people on board that are actually business-driven to get the revenue up to make a cost neutral. 

 

And then if our Games Delivery Partners are overspending, will have meetings to say, well, what can we do to optimize the spend? These are all the block and tacklings that will have to do, which I welcome and you know, I'm not without an ego myself. I have my own ego but I've learned long ago, the old Confucian saying ‘two ears, one mouth’ listen more than you talk. So that you can actually assimilate and integrate the inputs, and handle whatever the point of view is whether it's driven by hard ego or not. I didn't mention Sydney in my benchmarking for a reason. It wasn't a great process leading up to the games. It was a great Games, despite all that, which gives me a lot of hot actually. Okay, having said that we won't mimic that process. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Now, the question from the back

 

JOURNALIST : James Hall from the Courier Mail. You said to be patient, so I'll keep that in mind just on the infrastructure rollout. There's been some criticism of it. You’re concerned about some of the venues off the ground or committed to, particularly the Gabba. 

 

ANDREW N.LIVERIS : I am completely 100% here to implement what we agreed to with the IOC, any detour to that. And I've already got into conversations about some of the changes being litigated in the press. I will stay very true to the process on why a change is needed and if a change is needed. Look that Host Contract is great, and the Binding Agreements are great, but they aren't perfect. And you learn. And learning means that you've got to maybe be open to making changes to things that you had previously agreed to. Those cases need to be made, and they will be made our OCOG boards will sit and listen and frankly follow the process to make those changes. No problem with that. I'm a fan of the location of the Gabba being what it is. I like that idea. As a Brisbane boy, if I can say that, there's a lot of goodness about that, but, you know, we don't want to have a blown-out, budget to do it. So I'm sure the people responsible for looking at the costs, which the government, will come eventually and say, this is the better plan, and whatever their better plan is will take us through the process. 

 

TIM ARVIER : You are concerned about the cost of that exploding though?

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Of course, I'm concerned about every cost. I think I mentioned that. I'm a line-item guy. I look at the P & L and the balance sheet with very eagle eyes. And here is some breaking news for all of you, the world turning into pretty much a recessionary environment. Here's some breaking news, for you, inflation is going out of control, and interest rates are up. We're going to go through a bit of a downturn. If that's news to you, please talk to the media in the back room. There is definitely supply chain issues out there. Labour sourcing issues. There are, there are some costs escalations going on in lots of things. But we’re in the planning stage we can pivot and optimize so don't be too concerned. Yeah, I asked for patience but I also said urgent patience so I have no problem with edge. Keep pushing for the better answer, you get get a better answer that way but I am not worried right now that all these escalations are going to be on our docket. I think will be smarter and we need to be smarter than that. 

 

JOURNALIST : Yes, hello hello everyone, Steve Hunter from Radio, 4BC City Brisbane's News Leader. We certainly are now, however, you mentioned the shortlist for seeing potential CEOs and hopefully, November will know who, how hard with the bar the standard being excellence as an absolute minimum how hard is it going to be for that CEO to work with you? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : I need to listen to 4BC more, I loved you…I take that I think as a compliment but I’m not sure.  I didn't do what I did in my career without building great teams. Great teams are synergistic to your skills. They aren't your skills. They are synergistic people skills. They're complementary, they make, you better. They help you on your downsides and they do things to different job descriptions. I did in fact benchmark all the President/CEO combinations out there, including Sydney, and really looked closely at what were successful combinations. And as recent as my LA visit last week, it was a big topic of a conversation with the CEO and President there. I got them to talk frankly about the things that work well and things that don’t work well in the twosome they form as a relates to their job descriptions. I'm very confident that the shortlist we develop will fit and actually make all of us better. We have got, I think I said, an astonishing list of applicants and people who I think you will look at and say good, that’s the right answer and you know, if I drive them nuts occasionally that's fine. They can drive me nuts because I'm happy with that. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Are any of them in this room? 

 

JOURNALIST : The Brisbane Games are being promoted internationally as the climate-positive games. Is it appropriate for you to be seen on the Board? As well as being President of the organizing committee for these climate-positive games. 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Yeah, great question. So if you go do some work on what Aramco is doing and frankly some of the work that's been done in the Middle East, you'll see they’re designing a circular economy. So climate-positive is no good if you don't have the technologies or the pricing structures to close the loop on carbon because the taxpayer will pay. You will all pay for subsidizing technologies that are not affordable today, which is fine, that's one model but I'd rather you didn't pay. I’d rather the market paid. And what's the market? Aramco, and other companies like Aramco. So all the companies that are emitted should pay. And what's the best way of doing that? A circular economy. So I'm helping design, a circular economy for the Middle East. I'd love to do that for Australia. It is the right answer. Put a price on carbon suddenly. It goes away from a subsidy to an incentive. Who wouldn’t invest in incentives? Okay, so you make all this a reality - hydrogen,  batteries, solar. You won't have to subsidize it from your tax base. You let the market pay for it. Now, I don't think I'm at that forum that actually sells this concept to anyone, but you asked the question. So that's what I do. I sit at tables where I learn what the better answer is, even if it is from a table like a previous life that emits. Because if you emit you actually know the solution, and frankly, you’ve got to put technology engineers to play but you need business and finance people to agree. I’d love Australia to set a price on carbon. That's the right answer and then the circular economy will come into play. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Thank you for addressing the question. And just a quick follow-up on that one. Aramco is predominantly owned by the Saudi state, are you comfortable doing business with a regime synonymous with human rights abuses, including the butchering of journalists? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Yeah, I mean we're way off the Olympics. But look, I'm going to say, there’s an expression I’ve learned over the years, not mine, if you're not at the table, you're on the menu. You've got to be at the table to help countries become better. And right now, the geopolitics of the Middle East with the reproachment between the Sunni States, led by Saudi, and Israel has never been closer. I'd love to say I was part of the solution on helping the economic well-being of the region. Not by being involved in politics, which I'm not. But helping the economies, get the win-win. And frankly, being a global player, the one thing I'd love for Australia to do, is to be a leader in helping countries work and get together with each other, and bring it back to the Olympics. These are not just regional Queensland Games, they’re regional Oceana Games. We should help the Pacific Islands, be part of this, we should help our Northern neighbours like Papua New Guinea and others to be part of this. We should actually use the Olympics for geopolitical solutions. And I've learned that my entire career and sometimes it makes people uncomfortable that I've done that. But frankly, if I had a career making people comfortable, I wouldn't be sitting there, you've got to learn how to do the hard stuff, even though it has some downside risks, that's how you solve complexity. 

 

JOURNALIST : You said that you want the brand for the 2032 Olympics to inspire generations in our region for decades to come. But why will submissions close in such a short time in only two weeks? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS :  Because we think we have terrific vendor possibilities who can give us answers in a short period of time if we don't get what we like, will extend it. Don't worry. Don't worry about that. I got to tell you, I have been amazed as you'd imagine my phone's been ringing off the hook on all sorts of ideas about what to do with the Games. But the people who do events in Australia do events marketing, we have some of the best in the world. I have no doubt. We're going to get great bids but if we don't we'll look at just. 

 

JOURNALIST : I guess you said that you go to the public and you'll get their opinions and opinions of First Nations people, how do you do that practically over the next two weeks? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Remember, we're going for a bit on being a brand partner, not the brand. Once we get the brand partner, they’ll help us do all of that. 

 

JOURNALIST : They don’t have to send you their logo first,

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : They have to tell us their best process for getting the best answer to the question I posed. 

 

JOURNALIST : I know you've got 2 weeks to get the bid in. This brand Is going to be such a pivotal part to sell us to the world. How long will it be before we see it? Because presumably will be a pivotal part of the next 10 years. 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Yeah, I'm hopeful within the first six months of next, year, thereabouts. Yeah. Patience. But yeah, I’m urgently patient on that one too. I think this because I want to go talk to revenue possibilities and sponsors sooner rather than later. AOC controls that till 2027 in case, you haven't read the Binding Agreements. I can't get revenue, until I have something to sell so I'm as equally urgent and Rebecca Masci over there is nodding her head, let's call it the middle of next year.

 

JOURNALIST : You say that we really want to have some legacy. What will our legacy be down the track? Seems like you’ve already listed a few things, you've got a whole bag of anything in particular that you really want us to be known for.

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : My great observation about our wonderful country after being absent 35 years, coming back on holidays mostly to the Gold Coast, full disclosure, I mean, I always came back and always stay attached, the University will tell you that. Coming back and living here, a very powerful positive that's occurred in the country is our multiculturalism. Now I won’t be the first to tell you that we’ve got a ways to go and First Nations. In terms of all the ethnicities that constitute the nation, we've overcome some pretty big obstacles and created a multicultural society. I was on the radio earlier today and they asked me about my Darwin background. I said I grew up in a Greek family and I'd go to school and get punched up for having different things in my lunchbox, like do dolmathes and keftedes and that was the 60s-70s Australia. We've come so far as an advanced society so that I gave you the positive. Now, let me give you the area to improve. We have, I would say abdicated, but we have underplayed our incredible advancement in civil society that needs to occur to bring politics, policy and society together again. Democracies around the world are struggling and we see it everywhere. Who is in office, and what the policy framework will look like in three-year, election cycles? And I don't just look to the politicians, business people march in the public companies to 90-day financial events. Short-termism has completely hollowed out, the ability to function in an advanced society, in a democracy. And the answer to the question from the Guardian is not autocracy. Because I'm with you, that is the wrong answer.

 

The answer is inclusion from everybody, to have an equal voice. And gender, sexual disposition, race, your ethnicity has to be all on the table. How to pull that off, in a country of 25 million, people is very difficult and it  means representative government has to be consultative and integrated into society. In fact society gives you the right to exist and operate in that role and as a result of that, I think we can aspire to set the standard. I think we can be the gold standard for the planet right here. We are multi-dimensional and attributes. We are suitably most of us humble in our achievements. We really celebrate our athletes and our success stories, and we totally are devoted to education of our youth. And safety and security. I list those things as very uniquely Australian and I think many societies around the world aspire to that. So, I think we should label that brand that and deliver it. That might answer the two-week question as well. 

 

JOURNALIST : I know you're a big basketball fan. Presumably, as president, you get some decent tickets in 2032. If there's one event, you can go to at the 2032 games, which one will you be front row at? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Unfair question. I told you I was a sports addict. I think basketball would be an answer I’d normally provide but you took that out with your statement. Swimming. And our amazing athletes in the pool grab my attention all the time, sitting in the pools, around the world, See our wonderful swimmers achieve what they achieved and this Tokyo Olympics just showed us again. How can you not get goosebumps of that unfair? Every other thing, I'm sorry but I was asked to make a choice of one but all of them. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Trump. You have a significant amount of money to him for his inauguration. We often wonder what he was like behind the stage. I was at a press conference once, where he was speaking in the Rose Garden and a giant rat ran between two bushes behind him and everyone laughed - Trump had no idea what everyone was laughing about and it was the one moment when I ever saw Trump a little bit uncertain and my eternal regret the rat was never spotted on television on the cameras. In terms of dealing with him behind closed doors, what was it like, what was he like as a person behind closed doors? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Record correcting. First, Dow is a political subscriber to every President, you have to be bipartisan if you’re in business, you probably know that, so the donation on the inaugural happened for every President. Second, I worked with Clinton, George W Bush, Obama, Trump and Biden. Trump was the only one that fired me just to put the record straight. I was not the only CEO that was fired. He fired every CEO he worked with. Which starts to ask your question. Horrible. I know it gets reported differently when all this was happening to us. He appointed me Chair of the Manufacturing Committee, which Obama had. And I worked very closely with President Obama and he was a delight. But no one asks me about President Obama, everyone asks me about President Trump, completely unpredictable. The media got it right on him, I don’t say that very often, but the media got it right on him. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Run us quickly through the firing, did you get a “you’re fired” or?

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : So I don’t think I’ve ever talked about this. You’re getting an exclusive here. It wasn’t him, it was his son-in-law. His son-in-law did most of the dirty work, did I say that? Jared said “We don’t need you anymore, you guys are dismissed”- Ok, no worries. 

 

TIM ARVIER : Queensland politics is a unique beast in itself. 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : How are you making this link? I’m starting to be…

 

TIM ARVIER : The first meeting between the Olympic Committee and the Government had a few headlines which may not have been appreciated by the State Government with the Premier’s boyfriend making an appearance at the table, what went through your mind when you went to that lunch or meeting? 

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : Probably the first time I’m going to say this, I have zero comment on that, no comment. It was very much early days, I had no idea what normal was. 

 

TIM ARVIER : It’s probably why you’re in the position you are because you’re a very smart diplomatic man

 

ANDREW N. LIVERIS : I got fired by Trump!

 

TIM ARVIER : Well Andrew, we have run over time and we do have plenty more questions, but some great insights here for the business community and the media here, and plenty to cover in the news tonight. Thank you for coming.