KLM’s Elbers says new Air France KLM management structure is an option

Air France.com via Wikimedia Commons
Air France.com via Wikimedia Commons

KLM president Pieter Elbers said a ‘new governance structure’ will be presented for the troubled airline alliance in September.

‘That’s a broad subject. It can be the new chairman or the structure of Air France KLM itself could be revamped. All options are open,’ Elbers told online news service Nu.nl in Paris on Wednesday.

Elbers himself is often mooted as a new head of the combine, but he refused to comment, Nu.nl said.

Air France KLM presented first-half 2018 earnings figures on Wednesday, but the media were only interested in one subject: the new chairman.

The Franco-Dutch airline combine has been leaderless since the 4 May resignation of  Jean-Marc Janaillac over a failed pay deal for the French arm of the company. Strikes earlier this year cost Air France upwards of €400m.


Air France KLM is now being operated by an interim management team consisting of three representatives of Air France and Elbers from KLM. The KLM chief described relations on the team as being cordial.  ‘There is more that binds us than separates us,’ he said.

Elbers said the new CEO will have to first address the problems in France and then focus on group strategy. He said there was absolutely no chance of a divorce between the two airlines.

Air France KLM posted first-half  operating profit of €345m, higher than analysts had expected. KLM contributed a far higher share of group earnings.

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