AirAsia’s CEO is ready to step down. But no successor awaits

AirAsia’s CEO is ready to step down. But no successor awaits

The chief executive of AirAsia, Tony Fernandes, has decided to call it a day after holding the top spot for over 20 years.

Fernandes founded the airline in September 2001, purchasing the carrier from the Malaysian Government for 30 cents. He went on to turn AirAsia into one of the most well-known low-cost carriers across Asia.

So, the question remains, who will follow in his footsteps?

If you thought the drama in Succession had you on the edge of your seat, just wait until you hear about the aviation industry.

Well, that’s what we’d be saying if this article was about who will replace Qantas’ CEO Alan Joyce, but it seems there’s a bit less speculation about who will follow in the footsteps of Fernandes.

The AirAsia CEO said he is yet to confirm precisely when he will leave the position as it could take a while before they find an adequate replacement for him.

And what is Fernandes looking for in his successor?

“Honestly, I don’t care where [my replacement] is from,” Fernandes said.

“We don’t really talk about race, religion, sex, sexual orientation. I don’t care, as long as they can do the job.”

While uncertain when he will “press the button,” Fernandes said he wants to “attract the right leaders.”

The AirAsia CEO said he’s noncommittal about where he’ll go next.

“I like private equity with an active management and helping young people change things,” he told Bloomberg. “I believe there’s a low-cost model for education and health. These are the two things that discriminate people the most.”


Featured Image: AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes

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