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AirAsia Expedia appoints Tan as chief executive

AirAsia Expedia appoints Tan as chief executive

AirAsia Expedia, a new joint venture between AirAsia and the Expedia group, has announced Kathleen Tan as chief executive.

In this role, Tan will oversee the Expedia brand, AirAsiaGo, and Backick online travel agency businesses in south-east Asia, India, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.

Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia group president, said: “We are thrilled to have a business leader of Kathleen’s calibre join the AirAsia Expedia joint venture. 

“She has an impressive track record in building AirAsia into Asia’s biggest low-cost carrier over the past eight years, and we are delighted to have those skills brought to the AirAsia Expedia joint venture. 

“Furthermore, her substantial knowledge of Asia’s travel landscape and proven business acumen will be immensely valuable in taking AAE to future heights.”

Kathleen previously served as AirAsia’s group head of commercial and senior vice president of China since 2004, acting as group chief executive officer and co-founder Tony Fernandes’s right-hand woman managing AirAsia’s top-line performance and overseeing up to fifteen departments across the six AirAsia-branded airlines. 

During the past eight years, Kathleen’s strategic vision, boldness, and leadership have grown AirAsia’s revenue twenty-fold to over US$ 3.5 Billion in 2012. 

Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, AirAsia Group chief executive said: “Kathleen came to Malaysia not knowing anything about aviation, but her determination has led her to overcome every challenge and today she holds the pulse of Asia’s travel market.

“As AirAsia progress towards the second decade of success, we feel comfortable in letting Kathleen move to AirAsia Expedia.

“Our focus for the next five years is ancillary and adjacent business.

“The potential of AirAsia Expedia is enormous.

“Having Kathleen driving the business gives me huge encouragement and I am sure AAE and the OTA industry will escalate tremendously when Kathleen gets to work her unique style of brand-building, sales and profits growth,” he added.

About AirAsia Expedia

AirAsiaExpedia is the joint venture company between the world’s leading online travel company, Expedia Inc. and the world’s best low cost airline, AirAsia.

Headquartered in Singapore, AirAsiaExpedia oversees both Expedia and AirAsiaGo businesses across Asia Pacific.