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Charles Cartier Named New CEO of Air Mauritius

The airline is getting its 13th CEO.

An Air Mauritius Airbus A330-900 at the Paris Airshow 2019 (Photo: Airbus)

Charles Cartier has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Air Mauritius on Wednesday, March 6, replacing Krešimir Kučko, who stepped down on February 29 following a mutual agreement.

Kučko, the former CEO of Gulf Air, faced suspension less than a year into his tenure, along with the airline’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Jean Laval Ah Chip, for reasons concerning “good governance.” This decision came after allegations emerged regarding their acceptance of an all-expenses-paid stay in a hotel in France offered by one of the national carrier’s suppliers, as stated in Air Mauritius’ announcement on Sept. 15, 2023. Kučko was appointed as CEO of Air Mauritius on Dec. 6, 2022.

With no prior aviation experience, Cartier, formerly the founding Chairman of the Economic Development Board, which was established in January 2018 through the merger of three government agencies, brings 25 years of experience to his new role. He has held leadership positions in multinational companies and national organizations, both public and private. He becomes the 13th Chief Executive Officer (CEO) since the creation of Air Mauritius in 1967 and the 11th since the year 2000.

Speaking at a press briefing in Port Louis, Cartier outlined his priorities, with a strong emphasis on improving the traveler experience. He stated, “The traveler experience will be the focal point. We need all travelers to become fans of Air Mauritius and Mauritius. All Air Mauritius teams will prioritize making the in-flight experience as enjoyable as possible.”

Additionally, Cartier highlighted the importance of strategic positioning for the airline, including considerations for the fleet and strategic partnerships. He acknowledged challenges such as delays and cancellations, stating, “We know that in the background, there are bad experiences such as delays and cancellations. This problem needs to be resolved.” According to Marday Venketasamy, Chairman of the Board of Air Mauritius, Cartier “has all the qualities to fully assume the role of CEO of Air Mauritius.”

Another Resignation

Meanwhile, Ken Arian, CEO of Airport Holdings Ltd (AHL), resigned from the airline’s Board last Monday. Arian’s resignation came with a message to Radio Plus the following day, stating, “Cannot and will not condone bad governance,” according to media reports. However, Marday Venketasamy, the board Chairman of Air Mauritius, when asked for comments on Ken Arian’s resignation, clarified that Arian’s official resignation letter did not provide a reason related to his statement. Kantabye Babajee, Permanent Secretary, has since replaced Arian on the Board.

It’s worth noting that AHL, the holding company that owns Air Mauritius, is jointly owned by the Government (51%) and the Mauritius Investment Corporation (MIC), a subsidiary of the Bank of Mauritius (49%).

Victor Shalton

Author

  • Victor Shalton

    Born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, Victor’s love for aviation goes way back to when he was 11-years-old. Living close to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, he developed a love for planes and he even recalls aspiring to be a future airline executive for Kenya Airways. He also has a passion in the arts and loves writing and had his own aviation blog prior to joining AirlineGeeks. He is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in business administration at DeKUT and aspiring to make a career in a more aviation-related course.

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