Gulf Air confirms departure of CEO

DUBAI — Gulf Air yesterday confirmed the planned departure of president and chief executive James Hogan in late 2006, following the completion of the Project Falcon turnaround programme and the development of the airline's new strategic plan, Smart Airline — Successful Business.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Mon 10 Jul 2006, 11:22 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 3:05 PM

The airline also confirmed it expects to appoint a new President and Chief Executive before Hogan's departure.

Abdul Aziz Jassim Kanoo, chairman of the board of directors of Gulf Air, paid tribute to Hogan for his strong and decisive leadership.

"Hogan helped Gulf Air to return to its right place as one of the world's leading airline brands. His vision and commitment have been exemplary," Kanoo said.

"Project Falcon re-established Gulf Air as one of the world's leading airline brands. The new plan, Smart Airline, Successful Business, will take us to the next level of development, with investment in new aircraft, new maintenance facilities and new route and service initiatives," he added.

"Gulf Air continues to face the challenges of an incredibly competitive market environment, coupled with the wild card of fuel price rises, and it will be another challenging year for the airline, following losses in 2005.

"But both shareholders, Oman and Bahrain believe the right foundations have been set, with the new plan and that is why we committed further funding of BD100 million to the airline earlier this year. Each remains fully committed to Gulf air and to the future," he said.

James Hogan joined Gulf Air in May 2002, when he introduced the Project Falcon turnaround programme. Over the following four years, this cut the airline's losses and returned it to profit, in 2004, with the best performance since 1997, despite the continually worsening impact of fuel prices.

In addition, Project Falcon saw a re-branding of the airline and the launch of unique services including Gulf Traveller, Sky Chefs and Sky Nannies.

The airline has won many different awards over that period, including Most Improved Airline, Middle East Leading First Class Airline, MENA Platinum Best Airline and the prestigious Mercury Award for in-flight service.

Hogan said: "I am incredibly proud of the progress made by Gulf Air over the last four years. It has become one of the top airline brands in the world, with a service portfolio that is the envy of competitors in the region and across the globe." "Now with Project Falcon completed and all the major elements of the new strategy in place or under way, my work has been completed and it is on this basis that I made my decision to move on to new challenges."

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