The Battle to Rebuild Gulf Air

Gulf Airå‘s new President and CEO, Mr. James Hogan, unveiled his strategy for a new and bolder Gulf Air which includes a series of positive changes that will see the company recover market confidence and share, following the recent commitment of Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Oman to drive the airline forward.

Mr. Hogan has outlined a restructuring plan which focuses on ‘marketing and sales’ and introduces several new divisions. He said he was confident these changes would help restore Gulf Air’s market “confidence and share.”

“The next few months are very important for Gulf Air. My key priorities will be to restore confidence in the market and recover lost business opportunities,” said Mr. Hogan. “The battle to rebuild our airline has started.”

The renewed commitment to put the airline back on a profitable track includes the creation of an executive graduate program to train our future leaders, and the appointment of a number of senior international airline executives, who will join to provide specialist support. The company will also be reducing staff numbers and focussing on cost to ensure a more competitive structure for the airline.

Gulf Air has created a Service Division, led by Mr. Luke Medley, formerly CEO of Avis in the UK and Australia, and a former Ansett executive. He will be supported by Peter Rowe, who joins as Head of Customer Services from British Midland (bmi), where he headed its Services Division. The new division will focus on improving cost and efficiencies related to airport, in-flight, catering and services delivery.


The Network Division, headed Mr. Farid Alawi, was established to optimise schedules, utilisation of aircraft, yield management, and route profitability. Mr. Alawi will be supported by a team of international airline executives.

The Gulf Air Electronic Frequent Flyer Programme (e-FFP) was also launched, allowing Falcon frequent flyers to monitor their points and rewards on-line.

There is also good news for summer travellers following the launch of the Gulf Air Great Summer Escapes promotion with great deals on flights, hotels and car rentals.

“We wanted to treat our loyal customers to some exciting summer breaks,” said Mr. Hogan, “this promotion also demonstrates our commitment to remain competitive in the market.”

Mr. Hogan explained that many of the changes in Gulf Air are as the result of recommendations by US-based consultants Simat Helliesen & Eichner (SH&E), who were appointed last year.

“The unflagging support of the owner states and the Board allows us now to focus on continuing our work of making Gulf Air a world class airline,” said Mr. Hogan.