Viljoen’s Contract Extended for 3 Years

The contract for Fiji Airways chief executive officer has been extended for another three years. It is understood that the extension was given recently to the managing director and CEO,
26 Feb 2021 12:53
Viljoen’s Contract Extended for 3 Years
Fiji Airways managing director and chief executive officer Andre Viljoen.

The contract for Fiji Airways chief executive officer has been extended for another three years.

It is understood that the extension was given recently to the managing director and CEO, Andre Viljoen.

It is believed they are awaiting official announcement from the Minister responsible for Civil Aviation and Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, who is away overseas.

Pre COVID-19, Mr Viljoen, led the expansion of the airline’s footprint into other international hubs.

He has been and continues to lead the national airline’s team with resilience during this pandemic working alongside key stakeholders to ensure that Fiji Airways survives and thrives.

Mr Viljoen was first appointed as the Fiji Airways managing director and CEO in mid 2015 and has been at the core of the business transformation at Fiji Airways.


Some Noticeable Achievements:
– In 2018, Fiji Airways added three brand new Viking Twin Otter DH6 400 aircraft and two Boeing 737 MAX 8s, one delivered in 2018 and the other early in 2019.
– It also opened a new route on its network, flying three times a week between Narita, Tokyo, and Nadi.
– The airline also joined global airline alliance oneworld as its first oneworld connect member.
– In 2019, saw some major investments in Fiji Airways fleet, customer service and infrastructure,
– including the acquisition of two brand new A350-900 XWB aircraft, and
– the completion of the state of the art Fiji Airways Aviation Academy.
– The other key achievements in 2019 included being the oneworld connect partner airline, and attaining the coveted Skytrax 4-Star rating through enhanced service delivery on the ground and in the air.
– The airline concluded six new codeshare agreements with Alaska Airlines, Air India, British Airways, Finnair, Japan Airlines and Singapore Airlines, expanding its network to 20 direct destinations, and increasing its total destination reach (including codeshare) from 69 to 108 destinations.
– In 2020, theTravel Ready campaign is aimed at ensuring the medical safety and wellbeing of passengers and staff in a COVID-19 world,
– In 2021, Fiji Airways received the Diamond certification from APEX Health Safety powered by SimpliFlying. The ‘Diamond’ certification has only been awarded to a handful of airlines around the world, and Fiji Airways is the first airline of its size to achieve it.


Background From Fiji Airways:
– Mr Viljoen was born in South Africa.
– He holds an Honours Degree in Commerce and is a Chartered Accountant.
– He started his airline management career with Comair British Airways in South Africa in the 1980s as Financial Manager.
– He then took the position of Group Financial and Commercial Director, which he held for more than 10 years.
– He played an instrumental role in elevating Comair from a small regional airline to becoming South African Airways principal domestic competitor flying the British Airways brand.
– He then went on in 1992 to join South African Express Airways, the largest regional airline in South Africa, as Chief Operating Officer.
– In 1995, he joined South African Airways; South Africa’s National Airline, as Chief Financial Officer and took over as President and Chief Executive Officer in 2000 until 2005.


– He implemented an aggressive transformation programme known as “Perfecting the Basics” which restored the airline back to profitability by 2002.
– The transformation programme also earned the airline a Skytrax 4 Star Rating, as well as many travel awards such as “The Leading Airline to Africa”.
– He then went on to join the tour operator group Cullinan Holdings as Chief Executive Officer from 2006.
– In 2009, he joined Air Mauritius, Mauritius’ National Airline, initially as Chief Financial Officer and then from 2010 as Chief Executive Officer.


-In 2012, he launched a successful turnaround programme known as the “7 Step Recovery Plan”.
– The plan was focused on re-balancing the company’s network, improving revenue management and commercial, as well as re-fleeting with new generation aircraft.
– The plan restored the airline back to profitability by 2014 and it has ordered 6 Airbus A350-900 new generation aircraft to replace its aged fleet of Airbus A340-300’s.
– The service quality improvement programme implemented as part of the 7 Step Recovery Plan has earned Air Mauritius the Skytrax 4 Star Rating, as well as the travel award of “Leading Airline to the Indian Ocean”.



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