Club News

Flybe CEO Christine Ourmieres-Widener speaks at Aviation Club UK

flybe CEO Christine Ourmieres-Widener joined members and guests at the Aviation Club UK’s Club luncheon on Thursday 7 June.  After just 18 months in post she updated the Club on flybe’s progress, the airline’s future and her plans to help address the lack of female representation in senior airline positions.

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The Aviation Club UK

The newly appointed Chairman of The Aviation Club of the UK Karl Brünjes, told members and guests at the iconic Institute of Directors, ‘We are the UK’s Aviation Club yet with an international reputation and membership, and one we seek to expand..” 

His statement came before lunch where he briefly outlined the opportunities and challenges for the Club going forward and also paid tribute to outgoing Chairman Jane Johnston, saying she had dealt with a ‘boatload of challenges in a difficult environment’. 

flybe CEO Christine Ourmières-Widener was the speaker at the lunch and immediately flagged she would talk about gender and Brexit as well as outlining the current strategies for the UK’s regional carrier.  

She dismissed reported comments from Qatar Airline’s CEO Akbar Al Baker made at the recent IATA meeting in Sydney that ‘a woman couldn’t run an airline’ and said she had been asked many times how she got the job.  “Would the same question be asked of a man?” she added.  

Ms Ourmières-Widener, who amongst other senior appointments was a former head of Air France/KLM in the USA and CEO of Cityjet, went on to say she wanted to create a culture where women could do well because they are the best for the job stating “we have a need for change.”  On Brexit, said there was a sense of Brexit “fatigue” and that it was time to simply get on with it!

WOW – ‘Impossible is only an opinion’

The Aviation Club UK

Impossible is only an opinion.  That was one of many takeaway moments from yesterday’s speaker at the UK Aviation Club.

For those of us who were there to hear Skuli Mogensen’s story of WOW! – WOW did we have a treat!   For those of you who weren’t there – you should have been.  You missed a really special event. 

Skuli spoke without notes about he set up WOW!  How they arrived at the name, and what having a name like that means for the decisions that need to follow, and the expectations it sets.  He talked about how one day he can realistically see airlines paying customers to travel with them, because of the value their data unlocks in providing ancillary services. 

He talked about WOW!’s future plans – and provided plenty of headlines for the media guests present. 

He will most certainly go down as one of the most inspirational speakers we’ve ever had – and I was really lucky that it happened at my last lunch as Chairman so I got to host him at lunch, where the Top Table had a really animated cross-table conversation that everyone enjoyed. 

Thank you for the opportunity to chair the Club which has been an unforgettable experience.  Karl Brunjes now takes over and will be a brilliant Chairman.  He has a great Committee – and yesterday we had three very key and capable members re-elected in Donna Ager, Vicky Hartley and Jeremy Green, as well as winning Tony Whitty back after a year away.  Two new Committee members – Arnaud Fiscel and James McCarthy – complete a really strong line-up and it’s great to have the Club in such good hands.

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‘Project Sunrise’, 17 Hour Perth/London Flight, Exercise Areas … For Qantas This Is The Future

The Aviation Club UK

On Tuesday 27 March the Aviation Club was joined by Alan Joyce, Group CEO of Qantas, and team.  Marking the launch of the new non-stop Perth/London route.  Joyce spoke to a full house about this ground breaking move by Qantas and future plans, which include ‘Project Sunrise’.

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Business Travel News – Aviation Club and Aegean …

The Aviation Club UK

Malcolm Ginsberg reports for Business Travel News:  Dimitrios Gerogiannis, the engaging CEO of Greek airline Aegean was the speaker at London’s Aviation Club last week.  The MBA (Master of Business Administration) from the London Business School introduced himself by saying he preferred a dialog to a monolog which he would keep short in describing the airline, and then take questions ….

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Aegean Airline To Issue Fleet Renewal Tender Within Four Weeks ….

The Aviation Club UK

Dimitris Gerogiannis, CEO of Aegean Airlines, pictured here with Aviation Club UK Chairman Jane Johnston, spoke at the Aviation Club lunch in London on 7 February 2018.  Addressing Club members and guests, Gerogiannis explained Aegean’s future growth strategy, focus on high customer service levels and confirmed that a fleet renewal tender will be announced within a month….

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Aviation Club UK Young Professionals Survey

The Aviation Club UK provides a networking forum for its 500+ members from across the aviation industry, and a vehicle for promoting and developing all aspects of aviation.  The Club wants to get a better feel for the current awareness of, and interest in the Club among younger people building their careers in the industry, particularly those in the 20-35 age bracket, to see how we can make the Club more relevant for you.  We have produced a brief survey to help gain some insight.

The survey is open to members and non-Club members and if you fall within the specified age bracket, we would be really grateful if you could take a few minutes to complete the questionnaire and please feel free to pass the survey on to help us get as wide a perspective as possible.  If you are outside of the required age bracket please help us by forwarding to colleagues who do fit the criteria.

CLICK HERE to take survey

The closing date for survey responses is WEDNESDAY 31 JANUARY 2018

Aviation Club 2018 Speaker Programme Launches 7 Feb With Aegean Airlines CEO

Wednesday 7 February at London’s Institute of Directors sees the start of the 2018 programme of the Aviation Club UK with the first speaker Aegean Airlines’ CEO Dimitrios Gerogiannis.

Aegean’s first commercial flights were in May 1999 from Athens to Heraklion and Thessaloniki with two brand-new wholly-owned British Aerospace Avro RJ100.  It quickly expanded its operations and by 2009 was carrying more passengers than its long-established rival Olympic Airlines.  Aegean joined Star Alliance at the end of June 2010 and after a protracted pursuit took over what was by then Olympic Air and its routes.  Unlike Olympic, Aegean only currently flies short/medium-haul routes with a 46-strong fleet of Airbus 320 series aircraft.  Perhaps Mr Gerogiannis will tell us more?

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Blue Skies In February For The Aviation Club UK

The Aviation Club UK

The Aviation Club UK kicks off its new year event programme with a fascinating aviation success story at its first lunch on Wednesday 7 February 2018 at London’s Institute of Directors.

The first speaker in a great line up is Aegean Airlines’ CEO Dimitrios Gerogiannis whose airline has fought against all the odds to deliver a successful airline which is today the envy of the industry.

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For full list of 2018 events dates see EVENT section at


Alex Cruz revisits Avation Club UK

The Aviation Club UK

Alex Cruz returned to the Aviation Club UK on 7 December 2017 to address a capacity audience of 250 members and guests at the Club’s Christmas luncheon, held at the IoD, Pall Mall.  Read Cruz’s full speech HERE.

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