Cheapflights appoints new CEO

Cheapflights has announced the restructuring of its Board to position itself for its next phase of growth and international expansion.Chris Cuddy, formerly Group Managing Director, will assume the responsibilities of CEO from David Soskin. David will become Vice-Chairman and remain on the Board and will continue to represent the interests of existing shareholders as the Company contemplates its liquidity options.

Chris Cuddy has been Cheapflights’ Group Managing Director and Executive Board Director since October 2005. Working out of both London and Boston, he has been responsible for continuing to build top-rated management teams on both sides of the Atlantic. This in turn has helped drive Cheapflights’ ongoing UK growth and the Company’s huge success and profitability in the US. Importantly, Chris has also overseen the technology investment in, and resulting transformation of, the Group’s publishing platform. This has radically improved the functionality of the US site. It will be introduced to the UK this year and will facilitate international expansion with a common technology platform.

David Soskin co-led the management buy-in early in 2000, funded by a small group of private investors. David has successfully applied his entrepreneurial skills as CEO to build Cheapflights into one of the UK’s and the US’s leading online travel media companies. Starting with only three staff in early 2000, he has built a consistently profitable and leading online media business on both sides of the Atlantic. The Company now includes a highly experienced senior management team with over 12 years’ average experience in their relevant fields.

Commenting, David Soskin said: “As an entrepreneur with experience in successfully building early stage businesses, I recognise that Cheapflights has now grown into not only an international business, but also one of a size that requires a different style of management. When bringing Chris on board, it was clear that his technology background, his experience with major US dotcoms and leadership abilities would be of enormous benefit to the Company. Several years on, Chris has amply justified our decision. I am confidently turning over my role - and Cheapflights - into the safest of hands as the Company enters a new era.”

Chris Cuddy added: “The Cheapflights Group now has in place experienced management teams both here and in North America whose technology, internet media and travel industry expertise are second to none. Furthermore, with the recent appointment of John Clare as Non-Executive Chairman, and with the continued contribution of David Soskin as Vice-Chairman, we have an exceptional Board.”

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He continued: “Over the past eight years, David has built an international company with outstanding technology and a robust financial platform from which to embark on its next phase of growth. I am very excited at the prospect of building on his work and creating an expanded and pre-eminent international internet media brand.”

Non-Executive Chairman John Clare concluded: “David’s achievement has been considerable. Not only has Cheapflights grown to become a leading online media company here and in North America, it has grown impressively in both its traffic and profitability. It has also kept at the forefront of product innovation for its users and its advertisers. Chris takes over a dynamic company having actively helped drive its recent growth on all metrics. With his considerable technology and major internet companies’ background, I look forward to Cheapflights’ continued success, lead by Chris as its CEO.”
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