Air Asia India on Thursday named Amar Abrol to succeed Mittu Chandilya as CEO of the fledgeling airline. Chandilya’s contract with the airline ends on March 31.
AirAsia India, a joint venture of Tata Sons, AirAsia and Telestra Tradeplace Pvt Ltd, also announced the appointment of Ankur Khanna as the chief financial officer and Kiran Jain as commercial head.
“Amar Abrol will succeed Mittu Chandilya as the CEO of AirAsia India, with effect from April 1, 2016. Chandilya’s contract ends March 31 but he will continue with the company until the end of April to ensure a smooth transition of the CEO role,” the airline said in a statement.
Chandilya, sources said, had informed the AirAsia India board last December that he was not keen to renew his contract. According to airline sources, he was upset that important decisions relating to AirAsia India’s functioning were being taken in Malaysia.
Born and raised in India, Abrol graduated from Delhi University and is a qualified chartered accountant.
“Abrol, who has over 20 years of experience, was most recently the CEO of Tune Money, a start-up that aims to deliver low-cost financial products in South East Asia. Before joining Tune Money in 2013, he spent 19 years with American Express, leading diverse teams across multiple markets including Hong Kong, Singapore, UK, India and Malaysia,” the airline said.
“Chandilya led the airline team from the front through its launch and establishment in an intensely competitive market. The Board deeply appreciates his contribution. In Amar Abrol, we have a strong successor, with years of experience in customer delivery, which will be critical to the airline’s future. Together with his senior management team, we are confident that Amar will lead AirAsia India into its next stage of growth,” said S Ramadorai, chairman of AirAsia India.
“AirAsia India is poised for strong growth. I look forward to leading the team and together, giving many more Indians the opportunity to access the exciting promise of Indian civil aviation,” Abrol said.
Khanna joins from Air France/KLM, where he most recently held the position of Regional Finance Head for the Middle East/Gulf region based in Dubai.
Jain has over 25 years of aviation related experience covering airports, airlines and duty free and most recently headed the Airport Marketing and Route Development function at Delhi International Airport.