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Cooper steps down as Eurostar chief executive

Cooper steps down as Eurostar chief executive

Eurostar chief executive Mike Cooper has confirmed he will step down from the role to take over as leader of European passenger transport operator Arriva.

He will take up the new post in October.

Cooper will succeed Manfred Rudhart, who is stepping down as Arriva chief executive following almost five years in the role.

A terse statement from Eurostar said: “Eurostar shareholders have taken note of this decision and have now already identified a successor.

“He will be officially appointed to the Eurostar International Limited board of directors in the next few days.”

Cooper previously worked for Arriva for nine years.

He left the business in 2014 to become the chief executive of Yodel before taking over at Eurostar, the high-speed rail service between the UK and Mainland Europe. 

Prior to Arriva, he was the chief commercial officer of easyJet from its flotation in 2000 until 2005, and before that the managing director of the direct sales business of the Thomson Travel Group.


Cooper commented: “I am really looking forward to re-joining Arriva.

“Recent events have disrupted all forms of transport, but it has also brought into sharp focus the important role passenger transport plays in the modern world, from keeping people connected and supporting key workers in the fight against the coronavirus through to aiding economic recovery.

“At a time of uncertainty, Arriva’s aspiration to be a trusted mobility partner has never been more important.”


Also today, Eurostar confirmed that its London-Amsterdam service will operate fully direct both to and from the Netherlands from October 26th.

Tickets for the direct return journey go on sale from September 1st.

The route offers a journey time of just over four hours from Amsterdam and three and a half hours from Rotterdam to London.

With bookings open up to six months in advance of travel, passengers can plan ahead for travel over the Christmas period and up to February 2021.