Ex Tui exec Lund­gren hired to steer easyjet’s course

The Daily Telegraph - - Business - By Bradley Ger­rard

LOW-COST air­line easyjet has hired for­mer Tui direc­tor Jo­han Lund­gren to lead the car­rier just weeks be­fore out­go­ing chief Dame Carolyn Mccall leaves.

Mr Lund­gren has worked at tour op­er­a­tor Tui for the past 12 years in var­i­ous roles in­clud­ing group deputy chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer. He will join easyjet on De­cem­ber 1. Dame Carolyn, who is re­turn­ing to her me­dia roots by tak­ing the top spot at ITV, will re­main at easyjet un­til the end of the year as part of an agreed tran­si­tion pe­riod.

The hire comes at an im­por­tant time for the car­rier, which re­cently ap­plied for an Aus­trian air op­er­a­tor cer­tifi­cate, to en­sure it can con­tinue fly­ing in­traeu­ro­pean routes even if there is the bleak­est of Brexit out­comes. It has been op­er­at­ing within a fal­ter­ing Euro­pean air­line in­dus­try in which three car­ri­ers have col­lapsed this year.

The Lu­ton-based air­line gained a dom­i­nant po­si­tion in Ber­lin af­ter se­cur­ing a €40m (£35.3m) deal to ac­quire part of Air Ber­lin’s op­er­a­tions at the Ger­man cap­i­tal’s Tegel Air­port. It will lease up to 25 A320 air­craft and the req­ui­site take-off and land­ing slots from its stricken Ger­man ri­val, which fell into ad­min­is­tra­tion in Au­gust af­ter its backer, Eti­had, re­fused to con­tinue to fund op­er­a­tions, hav­ing in­jected €250m four months be­fore its col­lapse.

It is also in the run­ning for part of stricken Ital­ian car­rier Al­i­talia, but the out­come of the bid­ding process is not ex­pected to be clear un­til next year.

John Bar­ton, easyjet chair­man, thanked Dame Carolyn for “all she has done” dur­ing her near seven-year ten­ure at the car­rier and said Mr Lund­gren’s “proven ex­pe­ri­ence in Euro­pean travel” over a 30-year ca­reer would be an as­set for the com­pany.

Shares in easyjet have risen by more than 150pc since Dame Carolyn moved from the Guardian Me­dia Group to join the air­line in 2010. They closed up 5p at £12.75.

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