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Published on Thursday, January 9, 2020

Willie Walsh to stand down

Willie Walsh, the chief executive of British Airways' parent International Airlines Group (IAG), is to stand down in March.

He will leave the role and the Board on March 26 and will retire on June 30.

He will be succeeded by Luis Gallego, currently Iberia chief executive.

A statement from IAG said Gallego's successor at Iberia will be announced in due course.

IAG chairman Antonio Vazquez said: "Willie has led the merger and successful integration of British Airways and Iberia to form IAG. Under Willie's leadership IAG has become one of the leading global airline groups.

"Willie has been the main driver of this unique idea that is IAG. I hugely admire his commitment, strong leadership and clear vision, always ready to take on whatever challenges lay ahead of him. I am deeply respectful of what he has achieved as CEO of this Group, of his sense of fairness, his transparency and his capacity to integrate people regardless of nationalities or backgrounds.

"Willie has established a strong management team and I am delighted that Luis will be promoted from this team to succeed Willie as CEO."

Luis joined the airline industry in 1997 with Air Nostrum and he has been CEO of Iberia since 2014.

"The Board is confident that Luis is the right person to lead IAG in the next stage of its development and we look forward to working closely with Luis in his new role," added Vazquez.

Walsh said it has 'been a privilege to have been instrumental in the creation and development of IAG'.

"I have had the pleasure of working with many exceptional people over the past 15 years at British Airways and at IAG," he said.

"Luis has been a core member of the team and has shown true leadership over the years and I have no doubt he will be a great CEO of IAG".

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