Small is a director and principal of Murray King & Francis
Small Consultancy Limited, the business performance improvement
consultancy based in Wellington, New Zealand and operating
Francis graduated with an honours degree in civil engineering,
then gained Masters and Doctoral degrees in engineering also
at Auckland University, and later studied transport engineering
and management in the UK and Europe. He has also undertaken
senior management courses at Henley Management College in
the United Kingdom and Harvard Business School in the United
States. He has recently undertaken an Institute of Directors
course in company direction, and has also been made a Fellow
of the NZ Institute of Management.
Francis held senior management positions at New Zealand Railways
from 1983, managing the core freight business from 1985 to
1988. He was Chief Operating Officer from 1988 to 1990 and
Managing Director from 1990-2000. He headed the executive
team that turned around Tranz Rail's performance, achieving
major productivity improvements (700% on key measure), an
operating profit 1999 - 2000 of NZ$71m (net profit NZ$47m),
while transport prices were halved in real terms.
Francis played a major role in the restructuring and privatisation
of the company. He was a board member of NZ Rail and Tranz
Rail from 1990 to 2002, and a board member of the Chicago-based
Wisconsin Central from 1996 to 2001.
He has also been involved with the acquisition of railway
property in Australia through the Australian Transport Network
of which Tranz Rail is a shareholder. He is currently a board
member. He was a member of the New Zealand Shipping Industry
Task Force and the Australian Federal Transport Committee.
Since retiring from Tranz Rail in 2000 Francis has concentrated
in developing a portfolio career of board positions and consultancy
assignments. He is currently Chairman of Meridian Energy and
NZ Meteorological Service. He is also on the board of Antarctica
NZ, Standards NZ and a number of transport companies.
In 2000 he chaired the Ministerial Inquiry into the INCIS
project and also in 2000 chaired the committee examining the
feasibility of regional development options within the Wellington
Relationships between Tranz Rail and Regional Councils are
particularly important and Francis has acted for Tranz Rail
as a member of the various Regional Committees. In this role
he has been involved in the development of Regional Transport
Strategies and Regional Freight Strategies.
He has also acted for Palmerston North City Council and Venture
Stratford in reviewing proposals for the development of transport
Francis is a past National President of the Institution of
Professional Engineers of New Zealand and is currently Chairman
of Centre for Advanced Engineering. He was a member of the
Engineers Registration Board from 1998 to 2001 and is a member
of the Standards Council of New Zealand. He was also a Foundation
Member of the NZ Quality Council.
Actively involved in various community activities, Francis
is a former National President of Scouting New Zealand and
a former Vice Chairman of the Asia Pacific Regional Scout
Committee, Trustee for the Wellington Anglican Diocese, a
member of an advisory group for the Territorial Commander
of the Salvation Army in NZ, and involved with the Rehabilim
Trust, which supports disadvantaged children in Indonesia.
He won the BP award for the best paper presented to the Chartered
Institute of Transport on transport issues in 1986. He received
the Bronze Wolf award, World Scouting Organisation's highest
award, in 1998. He was made a Distinguished Fellow of IPENZ
in 2000 and he received the IPENZ President's award in 2001.
In the New Year's Honours List of 2000 he was appointed CNZM
for services to the transport industry and the community.
Francis is married with three adult sons and lives in Wellington.
Business phone: +64 4 473 3368
Facsimile: +64 4 472 8620