The Tatas’ frantic search for a CEO that started from the day they welcomed Air India back home and that spanned over 100 days since then has finally come to an end. ‘Who is the new CEO of Air India’ has been trending on the Internet and social media since Air India’s Chairman N. Chandrasekaran revealed the name officially. Air India’s new CEO will take up the responsibility on June 15, 2022.
The Tata Group, a salt-to-software conglomerate, has appointed Campbell Wilson, an industry veteran with 26 years of experience in international aviation, as Air India CEO and MD. He is currently the CEO of Scoot, Singapore Airlines’ fully-owned low-cost subsidiary in the Asia-Pacific. While announcing the new chief of the turbulent airline, N. Chandrasekaran said,
“I am delighted to welcome Campbell to Air India. He is an industry veteran having worked in key global markets cutting across multiple functions. Further, Air India would benefit from his added experience of having built an airline brand in Asia. I look forward to working with him in building a world-class airline…”
A native of New Zealand, Campbell Wilson had joined Singapore Airlines in 1996. He spent the first 10 years of his aviation career in Auckland. Thereafter, he started climbing up the management ladder in the Singapore Airlines Group (SIA). His first promotion was the airline’s VP of Operations in Canada. He was appointed as General Manager of Operations in Hong Kong and Japan in 2008 and 2010 respectively.
Campbell Wilson’s career with Singapore Airlines took a major turn in 2011 as he became the founding CEO of Scoot that started operating low-cost flights on short-and-medium-haul routes in June 2012 as a subsidiary of SIA. He drove Scoot to a new high until June 2016 as he was promoted to the Senior Vice President of sales and marketing for the SIA group. He is rejoicing in the opportunity to work with the Tatas, a most prestigious global brand. At the same time, the decision to leave the SIA group where he built his career and Scoot is not an easy one for him.
“Air India is at the cusp of an exciting journey to become one of the best airlines in the world, offering world-class products and services with a distinct customer experience that reflects Indian warmth and hospitality. I am excited to join Air India and Tata colleagues in the mission of realizing that ambition…” said Air India’s new CEO.
“The Tatas have already started working on the fleet upgrade, inflight service quality improvement, cabin refurbishment, on-time performance, etc. Reportedly, Air India’s on-time performance was 91.2 in March 2022; a 28% uptick after its takeover by the Tatas. What we expect from the new CEO of one of our partner airlines is expansion of Air India’s nonstop flights to more destinations with the growing number of Indian immigrants in the United States and other countries,” said the chief business development manager of Indian Eagle, a leading air-ticketing agency offering the best Air India fare deals and booking cost-to-cost flight tickets of other airlines.
Campbell Wilson’s appointment as Air India CEO seems to aviation experts that Singapore Airlines returned the favor that JRD Tata, the founder of Air India and the architect of Indian aviation, had done to the government of Singapore in the 1970s. In the heydays of Air India, JRD Tata, a legendary aviator and industrialist, was approached to design Singapore Airlines’ inflight services, according to various sources. To say in short, Air India was a pioneer for Singapore Airlines and other Asia-Pacific carriers in the golden age of air travel.