Air France-KLM Names Transition Management

May 15, 2018

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Air France-KLM has announced the executives who will steer Air France through a transition period as it seeks a new chief executive to replace Jean-Marc Janaillac.

Janaillac said he would resign if Air France staff voted against a pay offer tabled by the company. A staff ballot ended in defeat, with just over 55 percent of electronic votes registered against the company offer, and Janaillac duly resigned but was asked to stay on until Tuesday’s board meeting.

At the meeting of Air France-KLM directors, Anne-Marie Couderc was appointed as non-executive chair of both Air France and Air France-KLM boards. A three-person committee was announced to manage Air France-KLM, with group chief financial officer Frédéric Gagey acting as chief executive, and Air France CEO Franck Terner and KLM CEO Pieter Elbers serving as group deputy chief executives.

At Air France, current acting chief executive Franck Terner will remain in that position for the time being.

New chair Anne-Marie Couderc said the board “has complete faith” in the ability of the committees to manage the group's activities during the transition.

She said the board has asked them “to continue the work already under way on Air France-KLM’s medium-term strategic plan, a task which will be handed over to the group’s future governance. For my part, I will pay particular attention to strengthening the group's cohesion throughout this period.”

Air France staff have staged a series of one-day strikes which the airline said have cost it EUR€400 million (USD$473.2 million). Unions decided not to name further strike days at present and have asked the company to return to the negotiating table.