CEO of British Airways steps down as airline industry reels from Covid-19

12 October 2020, 07:30 | Updated: 12 October 2020, 08:01

Alex Cruz has stepped down with immediate effect
Alex Cruz has stepped down with immediate effect. Picture: PA

The CEO of British Airway's is stepping down from his role with immediate effect, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the travel industry.

Alex Cruz. who has headed up the company since 2016, will be replaced by Aer Lingus chief executive Sean Doyle.

IAG chief executive Luis Gallego said: "We're navigating the worst crisis faced in our industry and I'm confident these internal promotions will ensure IAG is well placed to emerge in a strong position.

"I want to thank Alex for all that he has done at British Airways.

"He worked tirelessly to modernise the airline in the years leading up to the celebration of its 100th anniversary.

"Since then, he has led the airline through a particularly demanding period and has secured restructuring agreements with the vast majority of employees."

British Airway's CEO has stepped down from his role
British Airway's CEO has stepped down from his role. Picture: PA

British Airways has come under fire in recent months for its handling of up to 12,000 job cuts.

The company was accused of threatening a "fire and rehire" scheme whereby remaining employees would be rehired on downgraded terms and conditions if an agreement could not be reached.

Trade union Unite claimed it has only carried out a "partial U-turn" on the issue, with "still too many BA workers facing threats to their wages and working life".

In June, the Commons' Transport Select Committee described the airline's treatment of its workers as "a national disgrace".

The pandemic has led to a collapse in demand for air travel, with passenger numbers not expected to return to 2019 levels until 2024.

British Airways is operating around a quarter of its normal schedule.

More to follow...