August 14, 2018 / 6:03 PM / 2 years ago

Air France-KLM to appoint Air Canada's COO as its new boss on Thursday: Liberation

PARIS (Reuters) - Air France-KLM’s (AIRF.PA) board is likely to appoint Air Canada’s (AC.TO) chief operating officer Benjamin Smith as its new boss on Thursday, according to French newspaper Liberation.

The appointment would mark the end of a search for a new CEO at the Franco-Dutch airline, following the departure in May of Jean-Marc Janaillac, who resigned after staff rejected a new pay offer.

The appointment of a new head for Air France-KLM will be the number one item on the agenda for the board, Liberation reported on Tuesday, without citing sources.

Smith’s name has been floating around in the French press since daily Le Monde reported last week that Air France-KLM’s nominations committee had picked the Air Canada executive as its preferred candidate to succeed Janaillac.

Asked to comment on the report in Liberation, an Air France-KLM spokesman said: “The appointment process is underway and is continuing. No decision has been made.”

Reporting by Mathieu Rosemain and Matthieu Protard; Editing by Mark Potter

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