BA lures Ansett boss to halt slide

British Airways has poached Ansett Airlines executive chairman Rod Eddington to be its new chief executive.

The airline fired Bob Ayling in March for a series of gaffes, including the unpopular redesign of its tailfins.

Eddington is charged with restoring profitability and staff morale at Europe’s largest airline. BA is expected to post a &£250m loss in the year to the end of March – its first full-year fall since privatisation in 1997.

Last June, Ayling announced BA would return to using the colours of the Union Jack following considerable criticism of a &£60m redesign in 1997 which saw the flag dropped in favour of more ethnic designs.

Ayling was also heavily criticised for his handling of a pay dispute with cabin crew in 1997, which led to a strike and cut the company’s yearly profits by &£125m.

A BA spokesman says Eddington will earn &£500,000 a year salary plus stock options and continue Ayling’s strategy of shifting the airline’s focus to high-margin business customers.

Eddington had worked at Ansett, Australia’s second largest carrier, since 1996.

Before that, he worked at Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific Airways, where spent 18 years ending as managing director.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here