Flybe has named Christine Ourmieres-Widener, the former chief executive of Dublin-based Cityjet, as its new chief executive. Flybe is the largest independent regional airline in Europe, based in Exeter, UK.
Ms Ourmieres-Widener spent four and a half years in Dublin with Cityjet, but left last November to take up the role of chief global sales officer for American Express Global Business Travel, the credit card company's network of travel agencies across 140 countries.
She will now take on the job of chief executive with Flybe on January 16th. Her appointment comes after previous Flybe chief executive Saad Hammad left by “mutual agreement” in October following more than three years with the group.
Chairman Simon Laffin assumed the role of executive chairman after his departure, but will revert back to non-executive chairman when Ms Ourmieres-Widener joins the group.
Mr Laffin said: “We are delighted that Christine is joining Flybe at what is a very exciting time for the company, as we transition to become an increasingly customer-driven business.”
Ms Ourmieres-Widener joins Flybe on a £400,000 annual salary, with an annual bonus worth up to £400,000, as well as potential long-term incentive scheme shares. Flybe is also paying £120,000 for Ms Ourmieres-Widener and her family to relocate from New York.
Flybe has struggled financially in recent years, booking a £35.6 million loss in 2015 before swinging back into a £2.7 million profit in 2016.
(Additional reporting PA)