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WestJet Group Announces the Appointment of Alexis von Hoensbroech as New Chief Executive Officer

Today, WestJet announced the appointment of Alexis von Hoensbroech as the company’s new Chief Executive Officer. Mr. von Hoensbroech will be subject to successful immigration process, which is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2022.

WestJet's New Chief Executive Officer, Alexis von Hoensbroech - Photo Inset Courtesy of Austrian Airlines

On Friday (December 17, 2021), WestJet Group announced the appointment of Alexis von Hoensbroech as Chief Executive Officer, assuming the role after a successful immigration process which is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2022. Mr. von Hoensbroech joins WestJet from Austrian Airlines, where he has served as CEO since 2018, successfully leading the carrier through the COVID-19 crisis. WestJet’s Interim CEO, Harry Taylor will continue in his role until von Hoensbroech joins the company, and will then return to his previously position as Executive Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer.

In Friday’s announcement, WestJet’s Chairman of the Board of Directors, Chris Burley, said,

“It gives me great pleasure, following our global search, to welcome Alexis to the WestJet Group as CEO. Alexis understands WestJet's low-cost roots and the importance of cost competitiveness in our vision for the future. We're extremely pleased to welcome Alexis to our team and into WestJet's remarkable culture. While at Austrian Airlines, Alexis refocused the airline on its core business, lowering its cost base to address rising competition from ultra-low-cost carriers. Alexis’ direct aviation operating experience builds on a career of airline consulting and research work.”

Also commenting on his new role as WestJet’s CEO, Alexis von Hoensbroech said,

‘I am really excited to be joining the WestJet team. WestJet is a remarkable success story, bringing affordable air travel to millions of Canadians. I am very much looking forward to working with the management team, the Board and all WestJetters and Swoopsters to write the next chapter of this success story, as the airline emerges from the pandemic.”

Mr. von Hoensbroech holds a doctorate in physics and spent his early career in management at the Boston Consulting Group in Boston and Tokyo, primarily with clients from the aviation industry. He joined the Lufthansa Group in 2005, where he was responsible for the strategy and subsidiaries of Lufthansa. From that point, he worked on various integration projects, becoming head of commercial at the airline’s biggest hub in Frankfurt, before moving to Lufthansa Cargo AG. Most recently, as CEO and CFO of Austrian Airlines, his management responsibilities included human resources, business development, corporate communications, financing, accounting and sourcing.

Celebrating 25 years of service, WestJet has cut airfares for Canadians in half and increased the flying population around Canada by over 50 percent. The airline launched in 1996 with three aircraft, 250 employees and five destinations, and has now grown to more than 180 aircraft and 14,000 employees, offering service to 100 destinations in 23 countries (pre-pandemic). Even during these unprecedented times, the carrier has maintained their rating by Cirium as one of the top ten airlines for on-time performance in North America.

Source: WestJet

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