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Air France-Klm: Benj Smith confirmed at the helm of the Group

Among the successes: good relations with unions and pilots, realigned the Dutch, focus on low-cost

The manager Benjamin Smith has been confirmed as managing director of the French-Dutch Group Air France-Klm until May 2027. This was decided yesterday by the board of directors of the two companies. The extension to his mandate comes ahead of the natural end of his term in the fall of 2022, amid tensions with the unions in phase and with the Dutch management of resolution. 

"He has demonstrated unwavering commitment and professionalism over the past three and a half years, justifying full support for his reappointment as CEO for another five ones", board chairman Anne-Marie Couderc explained yesterday.

Smith has led the Group at a time when the air transport sector is going through the worst crisis in its history. Air France-Klm has lost more than 10 billion dollars in the last two years, but in 2021, revenues are back on the rise (+29.1%) at a higher rate than competitors such as Lufthansa, British Airways, Iberia. The goal for this summer is to return to 90% of pre-crisis operating capacity. 

Analysts have listed some of the main successes of his presidency: he has restored social peace in a company undermined by repeated strikes; he has woven good relations with pilots; he has increased the power of the low-cost airline Transavia; he has realigned the Dutch airline Klm under the name of Marjan Rintel (instead of Pieter Elbers). 

On the same subject see the article published by AVIONEWS.

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AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency