Sir Stelios plans rival airline to easyJet

EasyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou (pictured) has unveiled plans to launch a new airline under the name Fastjet after a long period of being at loggerheads with the easyJet board.

EasyJet confirms it has had notification from Sir Stelios about the forthcoming airline launch. The low cost airline says that it will take legal action if Sir Stelios’ new venture infringes any of its agreements with easyGroup.

An easyJet statement says: “To the extent that any activity of Fastjet, Sir Stelios or any company controlled by him infringes or would infringe those rights, easyJet will take necessary action to protect the rights of easyJet and the interests of its shareholders.”

The airline also rejects claims by Sir Stelios that it has breached the terms of a contract between easyGroup IP Licensing (eGIP) and easyJet of 10 October 2010 rendering it null and void.

The legal agreement cleared easyJet to continue to use its name for 50 years. The agreement also gave the airline “greater operational and commercial flexibility” in regard to the brand license so it would not need eGIP’s consent for initiatives such as co-branding and promotions “with reputable brands”. These could include white label partners, such as car hire, hotels and travel insurance companies.

EGIP also gave up its right to appoint directors to the board of easyJet and Sir Stelios cede the right to appoint himself chairman.
A spokesman for easyJet says: “EasyJet continues to seek constructive dialogue with easyGroup and Sir Stelios.”

Sir Stelios has given no further details than the briefest confirmation of the name while there is also a website holding page at www.fastjet.com.

The easyJet founder and his family hold a 38% stake in easyJet.

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