Air India on Friday announced the appointment of Klaus Goersch as the Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, as well as various other senior level appointments.
In the newly-created position at the airline, Mr Goersch will oversee flight operations, engineering, ground operations, Integrated Operations Control and cabin crew functions.
Air India said incumbent chief of operations RS Sandhu will transition to an advisory role.
In a release, Air India said Mr Goersch’s role includes focus on the harmonisation of the four Tata airlines’ operating procedures, the Airbus A350 entry-into-service programme and assisting the team establishing the carrier’s new training academy.
A licensed B777/787 pilot, he had served in similar positions in both British Airways and Air Canada.
Air India has also announced the appointment of Manish Uppal, who transitioned from AirAsia India a few months ago, as Senior Vice President for flight operations.
Besides, Henry Donohoe’s corporate safety, security and quality role will be expanded to include emergency response. He title will be changed to Senior Vice President for safety, security and quality.
According to the release, the inflight product and service design functions being headed by Sandeep Verma will move to Rajesh Dogra’s Customer Experience portfolio so that the latter has oversight of all customer interfaces.
Pankaj Handa will lead ground operations, Choorah Singh will be Divisional Vice President Integrated Operations Control Centre and JuLi Ng will be Divisional Vice President for cabin crew. Goersch, Dogra and Donohoe will report directly to Air India Managing Director and CEO Campbell Wilson. The existing management committee members Nipun Aggarwal, Satya Ramaswamy, Suresh Dutt Tripathi and Vinod Hejmadi, whose roles remain unchanged, will report to Wilson, it said.
Mr Handa, Mr Singh and Mr Ng will report to Mr Goersch, as will Uppal and Sisira Kanta Dash, senior vice president engineering.
“These changes have been made with a view to managing succession, streamlining the organisation, optimising talent from within the Tata airline group and positioning it strongly for future growth and success,” Wilson said.
About Mr Goersch, Air India Chief said he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience that is valuable to the ongoing transformation at the airline.
“At Air India, we remain committed to building top leadership as we continue to invest in all the resources that are required to take the airline to the upper echelons of global aviation,” Wilson said.
Tata Group, which took control of loss-making Air India in January last year, is in the process of consolidating its airline business.
As part of the consolidation, AirAsia India (now AIX Connect) is in the process of getting merged with Air India Express, while Vistara will be merged with Air India.
Vistara is a joint venture between Tatas and Singapore Airlines.
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