Fastjet appoints new CEO
Fastjet has appointed the former CEO of Mango Airlines to its board following shareholder Stelios Haji-Ioannou requesting the carrier reconsider its chairman.
Nico Bezuidenhout will step in as chief executive office on 1 August for a three month period.
"Although market conditions are currently challenging, I am confident that we can build on the airline's existing operational base to strengthen and develop the business and deliver on its considerable potential," said Bezuidenhout.
Since the announcement, shares in the company have rapidly increased by up to 20pc.
Bezuidenhout joins Fastjet from Mango, the low-cost carrier subsidiary of South African Airways, where he has been CEO since it began operations ten years ago. During his tenure, he grew the airline's market share to 25 per cent of the South African domestic air travel market and the fleet to ten Boeing 737-800 aircraft. He also achieved the lowest unit cost within the South African aviation industry through high aircraft utilisation and sustained good load factors.
In addition to playing a pivotal role in the success of Mango, which has been profitable in eight of the past ten years, he also twice acted in the capacity of interim CEO of the parent company, SAA
Fastjet Chairman Colin Child said: "The Board is delighted that Nico will be joining Fastjet as CEO. He brings strong commercial and strategic skills and a wealth of experience of operating a low-cost carrier. This experience, together with his detailed knowledge of the markets in which Fastjet operates, will be invaluable to the company as it seeks to capture the growth opportunities in the region."
Bezuidenhout added: "I am very pleased to be joining Fastjet at this stage in its development. Although market conditions are currently challenging, I am confident that we can build on the airline's existing operational base to strengthen and develop the business and deliver on its considerable potential."