Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce had just begun speaking at a business breakfast at the Hyatt Regency in Perth, Australia, when he was attacked by an unknown man who shoved a pie in his face.
Joyce was addressing a business breakfast where he was set to announce the airline’s recent achievement of inaugurating direct flights to London. While he was making the announcement, an elderly man appeared behind him with a cream pie in his hand. While walking off the stage, the man grabbed him and pushed the pie in his face.
After doing the deed, the man attempted to quickly walk off the stage but was grabbed by security. The alleged attacker is believed to be in his 60s or 70s.
Joyce handled the entire situation pretty calmly and said he was not altogether surprised by the sudden attack considering his job.
“When you've been the CEO of an airline for nine years, there's a lot of things that have happened over that period of time, this is different, but it's not unusual. It is an unusual event, but things like this have happened in the past,” he added.
He even joked about the flavor of the pie and said he absolutely had no idea as he is not a big pie eater.
“I didn't have a chance to test it, it was mostly on my glasses. I think my issue is I need a good dry cleaner before I leave Perth, so if you have one, please recommend it to me,” he said jokingly.
He further added, “If there are any more pies, can you get them over with now?”
He also said that instead of making any speculation about the incident, he would leave it for the police to investigate.
“We’re going into pure speculation here and I think the police need to investigate this. This is in the hands of police and we should let them do their investigation,” added Joyce.
It is unclear why the alleged attacker smashed a pie into the CEO’s face.
According to Western Australia Police spokesman, “Officers have been called to a hotel in Adelaide Terrace, East Perth in relation to an assault.”
The spokesman further added that one person is in custody in relation to the incident.
Joyce has been unpopular as he courted several controversies during his time at the airline.
However, he is not the first high-profile person to have been struck with a pie. News Corp executive chairman Rupert Murdoch, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and television presenter Jeremy Clarkson have also been victims of pie attacks.
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce hit in the face with a pie at a Perth business breakfast at the Hyatt by an "older man" who walked out from backstage.— Gareth Parker (@G_Parker) May 9, 2017
Tough morning for Qantas CEO Alan Joyce - hit with a pie while addressing a breakfast in Perth. Offender in custody, motive unclear pic.twitter.com/bRa4x7k3UX— Tess Ingram (@TessIngram) May 9, 2017