Something must be going on at Emirates management, or something…
Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer has resigned
It has been announced today that Emirates EVP and Chief Commercial Officer, Thierry Antinori, has resigned with immediate effect. With the exception of CEOs I don’t usually cover changes in executive positions at airlines unless I find them particularly interesting… and this is one of those cases.
Who is Thierry Antinori?
For those of you not familiar with Antinori, he has been with Emirates since 2011, where he started as the EVP for sales, before being promoted to his current position in June 2013.
He has been in the airline industry for over 30 years, and previously had senior positions at both Air France and Lufthansa.
It’s worth noting that Antinori claimed that in 2016 he was offered the role of CEO of Air France-KLM, but chose to stay on at Emirates instead.
What could cause him to resign?
Some are suggesting that Antinori’s departure may have to do with Emirates’ recent financial results, where the airline saw a 69% drop in profits last year. I doubt that’s the case, though, because all things considered I’d say Emirates still did pretty well.
No reason has been given as to why Antinori suddenly resigned. I’m not sure if this is related to disagreements at the top at Emirates, or if this is related to him finding another opportunity elsewhere.
Tim Clark has been the president of Emirates since 2003, and there have long been rumors of him eventually retiring, given that he’ll be turning 70 this year. Antinori was considered a top contender for taking over that position. Then again, so was Christoph Mueller, who also resigned from Emirates earlier this year.
Antinori allegedly turned down a huge opportunity in 2016, so one has to wonder what exactly has happened in the past couple of years that is causing him to go from turning down one of the biggest jobs in the airline industry, to suddenly resigning at Emirates.
Maybe we’ll find out more soon, maybe we won’t. I imagine either Antinori got a big opportunity somewhere else, or he realized that he wasn’t in line to take over Clark’s job at Emirates, or there might be a bigger shakeup at Emirates management. Or perhaps it’s a combination of a couple of those factors.
What do you make of Antinori’s sudden departure from Emirates?
(Tip of the hat to Oleg)