Ilker Ayci, ex-chairman of Turkish Airlines, will now pilot Air India as new CEO
NEW DELHI: Former chariman of Turkish Airlines Ilker Ayci has been appointed chief executive officer (CEO) and managing director (MD) of Air India. Tata Sons, which took over Air India last month, announced on Monday that the airline’s board met in the afternoon to consider the candidature of Ayci and picked him.
Ayci is expected to take charge on or before April 1, 2022.
On being appointed the CEO and MD of Air India, Ayci said, “I am delighted and honoured to accept the privilege of leading an iconic airline and to join the Tata Group. Working closely with my colleagues at Air India and the leadership of the Tata Group, we will utilise the strong heritage of Air India to make it one of the best airlines in the world with a uniquely superior flying experience that reflects Indian warmth and hospitality.”
Tata Sons said in a statement that its chairman N Chandrasekaran was a special invitee to the meeting, and the board, after due deliberations, approved Ayci’s appointment.
“This appointment is subject to requisite regulatory approvals,” a Tata Sons spokesperson said. “Until very recently, Mr. Ilker Ayci was the chairman of Turkish Airlines, and he was on the board of the company prior to that.”
Chandrasekaran said, “Ilker is an aviation industry leader who led Turkish Airlines to its current success during his tenure there. We are delighted to welcome Ilker to the Tata Group where he will lead Air India into the new era.”
Ayci was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1971. He graduated in political science and public administration in 1994 from Bilkent University . After a research spell in political science at Leeds University in the UK in 1995, he completed an international relations master’s programme at Marmara University in Istanbul in 1997.