airberlin has announced that Thomas Winkelmann (57) will become the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of airberlin group.
Mr. Winkelmann will take over as CEO of Air Berlin PLC from 1 February, 2017, assuming full accountability for all group activities. He will succeed Stefan Pichler, who decided to leave the company after working for two years on the strategic turnaround of the group.
Mr. Pichler achieved this by entering into a wet-lease agreement with the Lufthansa Group for 38 aircraft and through selling the short and medium haul touristic business to Etihad Aviation Group, in order to create a new European leisure airline group in a joint venture with TUI AG. The new airberlin will focus on developing its long haul network out of Berlin and Düsseldorf, with initially 75 aircraft.
Thomas Winkelmann will continue the implementation of these measures to ensure a sustainable and profitable future for airberlin.
Mr. Winkelmann has over 18 years of experience in the airline industry. He started his career in 1998 with Lufthansa Group, initially accountable for the sales organisation in South America and the Caribbean and subsequently taking over the sales and service organisation as Vice President for North and South America.
From September 2006 until October 2015, he was CEO of the Lufthansa low-cost subsidiary Germanwings. Following the announcement of the integration of Germanwings into Eurowings, Mr. Winkelmann was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of the Lufthansa Hub in Munich.
Mr. Winkelmann was born in Hagen. He studied Linguistics and Ancient History at the Free University Berlin and at Münster University. He continued his studies at the Free University Berlin as a postgraduate in Business Administration. In 2004, Mr Winkelmann successfully completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School in Boston.