The AirAsia X Group has a new chief executive officer, after the leading Asian long-haul low-fare carrier confirmed its two co-founders were revamping their roles.

AirAsia X Thailand’s CEO Nadda Buranasiri (pictured, right) was appointed to his new Group CEO position with immediate effect. He replaces co-CEOs Tan Sri Tony Fernandes and Datuk Kamarudin Meranun, who will remain on the board as non-executive directors.

Fernandes will remain group CEO of AirAsia X’s larger sister company, AirAsia. He has been co-CEO of the long-haul low-fare sibling since January this year. Fernandes and Kamarudin will both continue to oversee the strategic direction of the business and its operations as directors of AirAsia X Berhad, the company added.

Fernandes said the move was an important one for the long-haul airline as it continued with its business transformation plans to take long-haul, value air travel to new heights. “AirAsia X pioneered long-haul, low-cost air travel 11 years ago on 2 November 2007 and continues to grow in line with consumer demand, which is gaining momentum world over.

“Nadda has had an exceptional career and brings a wealth of experience in a broad range of industries, including senior roles in sales, advertising, banking and the music industry, where I worked with him in 1996 in his role as managing director of record label MCA, which later became Universal Music Thailand.

“He joined the aviation industry in January 2014 as CEO of AirAsia X Thailand and has been instrumental in not only setting up our Bangkok-based long haul operations, but also making it one of the most successful and popular long-haul airlines in Asia. This is a great example of our internal talent development and succession planning for our key leadership roles.”

Kamarudin added that the airline would “continue to grow and work towards creating a sustainable, viable long-haul business for the future in existing and new global markets.”

AirAsia X operates a fleet of Airbus A330s and recently placed an order for an additional 34 A330neo wide-body aircraft. Benyamin Ismail remains as CEO of the AirAsia X Malaysia operation.


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