Pierre-Henri Gourgeon has stepped down as CEO of Air France and the Air France-KLM group, following pressure from the board of directors.
Having held the post since 2009, Gourgeon was expected to stay until 2013, but following a board meeting yesterday, it emerged that he had quit.
The news came amid reports of poor performance for the airline – with shares having fallen almost 53 percent in the past six months.
In addition there has been speculation that poor pilot training had been a factor in the 2009 crash that killed 228 people.
Air France-KLM is determined to “improve operating and financial performance in a context of economic uncertainties affecting European air traffic, as well as the position of Air France in respect of increased competition from new entrants.”
The group has revealed that it has postponed plans to reorganize into a full fledged holding company, with integrated divisions, from the beginning of 2012 until 2013.
Jean-Cyril Spinetta will remain chairman and resume his previous role as CEO.