SHARE
COPY LINK

OFFBEAT

SKF head named Sweden’s ‘funniest’ CEO

Tom Johnstone, the Scottish CEO of Swedish ball-bearing giant SKF has been named Sweden's funniest CEO in an competition backed by Comedy Central.

SKF head named Sweden's 'funniest' CEO

“One can not help but smile when the 1.75 metre tall ruddy-faced father of three welcomes you to SKF. That Scots are known to be funny, charming and a little ‘out of the box’ certainly applies to Tom,” read the citation announcing the award organized by Comedy Central and Swedish young shareholders group Unga Aktieägare.

Johnstone, who was educated in his home town of Glasgow and was employed as a sales person at SKF in 1977, was occupied the post of CEO since January 2003.

Despite his long stay in Sweden, Johnstone is reported to have brought some of his native idiosyncrasies to SKF.

“He has quickly adapted to the Swedish coffee break – yes, well almost. The kilt is still worn, and no one really knows if there is anything underneath it. But with his guile and energy, tempo and drive he moves the company onwards, clearly inspired by his interest in Formula One and Rock ‘n Roll.”

“He does his best to prompt a giggle, in an otherwise far too grey sector.”

Johnstone beat off the challenge of a slew of Swedish industry stalwarts such as Scania’s Leif Östling, described as a “cool guy with a twinkle in his eye”, as well as some slightly unlikely winners such as Hans Pandeya, who when bidding to take over The Pirate Bay was portrayed as “the Baghdad Bob of the business world”.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

OFFBEAT

Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim

Police on the island of Gotland removed a public sculpture from the Galgberget nature reserve near Visby on the grounds that it is just too creepy.

Swedish police remove sculpture mistaken for suicide victim
The gallows at Galgeberget. Photo: Artifex/WikiCommons
According to local news site Hela Gotland, someone was out for a stroll on Galgeberget (the Gallows Hill) on Wednesday when they saw what they thought was a body hanging after a suicide. Local police were contacted but when they went to investigate they instead found a sculpture by artist Jessica Lundeberg. 
 
The artwork, entitled ‘The Watcher in the Woods’, is a partially transparent plate sculpture that looks like a spooky little girl. 
 
 
Despite discovering that the suspected suicide victim was actually artwork, police determined that Lundeberg’s piece could scare others and thus took the sculpture down. 
 
“It was decided that if it were to remain, more people would likely be frightened in the same way,” Gotland police spokesman Ayman Aboulaich told Radio P4 Gotland. 
 
Lundeberg told Hela Gotland that the sculpture has been at Galgeberget since a public art project last summer and that this was the first time it had caused any concern. She said ‘The Watcher in the Woods’ was the only piece that was allowed to remain after the end of the project. But now it is there no more. 
 
 
Lundeberg has taken the sculpture back to her studio. While she hopes it will eventually return to Galgeberget, the artist told Hela Gotland it seems unlikely.  
 
She said that the sculpture was damaged by police. 
 
“It was ragged, dismantled and broken. I was horrified when I saw it,” she said. 
 
Police have reportedly promised to pay any necessary repair costs.
 
Although the person who reported the sculpture to the police has not spoken with the media, their jump to conclusions could perhaps be attributed to the nature reserve’s macabre history. Galgeberget is still home to gallows that were used to hang criminals for centuries. The last execution to be held at the site was in 1845, according to Hela Gotland
 
 
SHOW COMMENTS