Ilker Ayci is new Air India CEO: Tata Sons on Monday informed that former chairman of Turkish Airlines Ilker Ayci has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Managing Director (MD) of Air India.
Tata formally took control of Air India on 27 January, 2022.
The Air India board met this afternoon to consider the candidature of Ayci. N Chandrasekaran, chairman of Tata Sons, was a special invitee to the board meeting. The board, after due deliberations, approved the appointment of Ayci as the CEO and MD of Air India.
Ten facts about Ilker Ayci
- Ayci until very recently was the chairman of Turkish Airlines. Prior to this, he was on the board of directors of the company.
- Ayci was born in Istanbul in 1971. He is a 1994 alumni of Bilkent University’s Department of Political Science and Public Administration.
- After a research stay in political science at the Leeds University in the UK in 1995, he completed a Master’s program in International Relations at the Marmara University in Istanbul in 1997.
- Ayci led Turkey’s flag carrier for six years from 2015. Turkish Airlines struggled during the first year of the pandemic as air travel slumped but recovered by reducing staff costs and taking advantage of a booming freight business.
- Under Ayci’s management, Turkish Airlines moved to its new hub in Istanbul, which is set to be the world’s largest airport when fully completed in 2023.
- Ayci will assume his responsibilities on or before 1 April 2022.
- Ayci's appointment is subject to requisite regulatory approvals.
- On his appointment, Ayci said he was delighted and honored to accept the privilege of leading an iconic airline and to join the Tata group.
- "Working closely with my colleagues at Air India and the leadership of the Tata group, we will utilize the strong heritage of Air India to make it one of the best airlines in the world with a uniquely superior flying experience that reflects Indian warmth and hospitality," he said.
- Tata Sons chairman Chandrasekaran said Ilker is an aviation industry leader who led Turkish Airlines to its current success during his tenure there. "We are delighted to welcome Ilker to the Tata group where he would lead Air India into the new era," he said.
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