Now hiring: Permanent CEO for SAA

 ·8 Apr 2024

Following the collapse of the South African Airways’ (SAA) deal with the Takatso Consortium as strategic equity partners, the airline is looking for a permanent executive after being led by an interim board for the past three years.

Over the weekend, SAA advertised five interim executive management positions, including that of Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Chief Commercial Officer, Chief Human Capital Officer, South African Airways Technical CEO, and CEO of its catering service subsidiary, Airchefs.

“The filling of these posts is a positive… step aimed at providing organizational stability and predictable direction of the growth plans and expansion plans currently being pursued, ” said chairperson of the interim board of directors, Derek Hanekom.

Over the past three years, SAA has been led by interim executive management team that was tasked with steering the airline until the anticipated Strategic Equity Partner could come on board.

This was expected to be Takatso, however, this never came to fruition.

Back in December 2019, SAA was placed under business rescue “to restore confidence in the airline, safeguard its good assets, and help to restructure and reposition the entity into one that is stronger, more sustainable and able to grow and attract an equity partner.”

John Lamola took over as interim CEO in May 2022, succeeding Thomas Kgokolo, who departed from the airline the month before. This change in leadership came after Kgokolo had filled the interim CEO position following SAA’s emergence from business rescue in April 2021.

“The interim executive management team has admirably rebuilt the airline as it emerged out of business rescue with the understanding that their posts would remain interim positions until a new controlling shareholder appoints its management team,” said Hanekom.

Applications for these positions close on Friday, 26 April 2024.

Read: Legal threats fly in messy SAA sale saga

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