Bjørn Kjos, CEO of Norwegian Air Shuttle is to step down on July 11, after 17 years. He is taking up a new position as an advisor to the chairman. Until Norwegian appoints a new CEO, CFO Geir Karsen will act as interim CEO, while chairman Niels Smedegaard will take a more active role in management.
“I am very pleased Bjørn will remain at the company as an advisor to the Board and the Chair. As Norwegian moves from growth to probability, it will be an advantage for the company to benefit from Bjørn’s extensive network, in-depth knowledge of and experience with global aviation. We have already started the process or recruiting a permanent CEO,” said Niels Smedegaard, chairman of the board of directors.
Bjørn Kjos is one of the founders of Norwegian Air Shuttle. During his tenure as CEO, the company had developed from a small domestic operation with 130 employees and four aircraft to a global and award-winning low-cost airline with more than 11,000 employees and 162 aircraft.
“Bjørn has played an unprecedented role in Norwegian’s success. His vision of offering affordable fares for all, combined with his enthusiasm and innovating spirit, has revolutionised the way people travel for pleasure and for business, not least between the continents. Bjørn is definitely one of the most influential European entrepreneurs of our time,” Smedegaard said.