Norwegian Air CEO Bjørn Kjos Steps Down

By Jesse Sokolow on 11 July 2019
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IMG_5037 (1)Norwegian Air Shuttle CEO and co-founder Bjørn Kjos announced on Thursday he was stepping down from his role as the airline’s chief executive officer, effective immediately.

Mr. Kjos is a Norwegian aviator and lawyer, and he will remain a consultant to the airline. The carrier immediately announced the appointment of its CFO, Geir Karlsen, to the position of interim CEO.

“After 17 years, I’ve decided to step down,” Mr. Kjos said in a tweet. “I look forward to new challenges at Norwegian and welcome Geir Karlsen as acting CEO.”

Mr. Kjos and several former employees of Busy Bee, a Norwegian airline that went into receivership in 1993, formed Norwegian Air Shuttle after raising one million kroner in new capital and acquiring assets and employees from Busy Bee. He grew the new airline to the point where he was able to introduce long-haul service using brand-new Boeing 787 Dreamliners in 2014.

“I’m incredibly proud of what the team has achieved together so far at Norwegian,” Mr. Kjos added in a tweet.

Norwegian Chairman Niels Smedegaard said that Mr. Kjos “revolutionized the way people travel for pleasure and for business, not least between the continents,” adding that “Bjørn is definitely one of the most influential European entrepreneurs of our time.”

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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