Read the profiles of our expert speakers.
A graduate of the Ecole Polytechnique and Les Ponts et Chaussées, Marc Lamidey spent 21 years at Air Inter followed by a year in the US as a liaison between Air France and Continental Airlines. In 1998, he was promoted to Air France Executive VP, in charge of Marketing and Corporate Development. He was also President and CEO of Frequence Plus SA. Since December 2001, he has been President and CEO of Brit Air and the ICARE Training Centre.
Simon McNamara was appointed Director General on 1 January 2013. Prior to this he held the position of Deputy Director General and before was Director Industry Affairs covering the development, promotion and implementation of ERA's policies on air traffic infrastructure, user charges, airport matters, the environment and Air Transport Policy. His new position adds Technical Services to his portfolio of responsibilities. Before joining ERA he worked for the Flight Data Company in the UK, producing, delivering and supporting flight operations quality assurance programmes for airlines in Asia. Previously, he worked for the International Federation of Airline Pilots' Associations (IFALPA). He has a degree in Aeronautical Engineering and an MSc in Air Transport Management.
Peter Davies was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Air Malta in March 2011. With over 35 years' experience in aviation, he is a recognised expert in successfully restructuring ailing businesses and unleashing their potential. Previously he has served as CEO for Air Southwest in the UK, Caribbean Airlines in Trinidad & Tobago and SN Brussels Airlines in Belgium. Against perceived wisdom and market expectations, he saved both from extinction and created sustainable airlines with a reputation for excellent regional service. Both carriers continue to operate in their respective markets and make a major contribution to regional economies. He also had a long and distinguished career with DHL, serving as Chief Operating Officer for DHL Express in the United States, and previously as Regional Director, DHL Europe, where he established the company as Europe's leader in Express Delivery. Providing excellence in customer service is the driving force behind his business achievements, and Peter is a compelling speaker on delivering outstanding service and leading cultural transformation.
Boet Kreiken was appointed Managing Director of KLM Cityhopper on 1 June 2009, prior to which he was KLM's Chief Information Officer. After graduating from the University of Technology in Twente, and following officer's service in the Royal Dutch Air Force, he joined KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. His career at KLM has spanned various management positions from commercial and global account management to Pricing & Revenue management and Area Manager of Asia Pacific and Central/South America.
Maurizio Merlo was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Darwin Airline in 2011. Prior to this he has held various senior positions at Darwin airline since 2004 including Accountable Manager and Chief Operating Officer, Post Holder Crew Training and Post Holder Flight Operations. He was also instrumental in the initial certification and development of Darwin Airline. Prior to this his career in aviation includes roles at Crossair and Swiss International Airline commanding SB20 and SB340 aircraft. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics from SSEA, Bellizona and a range of qualifications relating to aviation.
Arbi Xhelo is the founder and CEO of Belle Air in Albania. After graduating in Law from the Catholic University of Milan, and the Master graduation in Advanced International Studies has been leading the airline from April 2006, and currently Belle Air is a leader in the Albanian Market covering a network of 24 destinations from Tirana in 6 countries. With over 10 years' experience in aviation, he has started his career from ticketing, ramp, airport services, and commercial activities to CEO position.
Magni Arge currently holds the position of President of Atlantic Airways. As the Faroese flag carrier Atlantic Airways is based at Vagar Airport, in the Faroe Islands. The company took delivery of its first Airbus A319 in spring 2012, bringing its total fleet to four fixed-wing aircraft and two helicopters. The airline provides regular scheduled services between the Faroe Islands and Denmark, as well as the UK, Iceland, and Norway. Atlantic Airways is also an important European player in the ACMI and aircraft charter market. The company also provides a regular helicopter service to the outer Faroese islands, as well as offshore transport and search-and-rescue activities under contract to the Faroese Government.
David McMullen is a Vice President at SimpliFlying, a Singapore-headquartered strategy firm that consults and trains airlines and airports globally on customer engagement and marketing. Based out of Manchester, he supports client projects in the Airports realm, representing SimpliFlying at conferences and forums globally. Previously, he led sales and business development for the Routesonline platform at UBM Aviation.
Tom Christides has been in the airline industry since 1980, working for Blue1/SAS, Finnair and Swissair in Finland and abroad. He has been active within ERA, as chairman of the Industry Affairs Group for six years. He received the ERA Director General's Commendation for Services to the Industry in 2009. Besides aviation he has a broad experience in crisis communications during his years at Blue1, also functioning as spokesperson for SAS Group in Finland, he experienced the heavy pressure from the media on three genuine crisis situations, two of them fatal accidents. He is a member of Kenyon International Emergency Services' Crisis Communications Team. His company TCC Tom Christides Consulting is an affiliate member of ERA as well as ProCom– the Finnish Association of Communications Professionals.
Steve Dunne is Executive Chairman of The Brighter Group one of the UK's leading marketing communications companies (specialising in the aviation, transport, hospitality and travel industries). A marketing professional with over 30 years experience within the corporate communications field, he has worked in a variety of senior management posts within leading blue chip companies including British Telecom and HSBC as well as holding board positions in global PR consultancies including Porter Novelli. He was also head of Corporate Communications (Europe) for South African Airways (SAA) between 1994 and 1997. Here he managed the PR and marketing around the substantial growth of the airline during this period. He also launched Alliance Air, SAA's east Africa subsidiary operating in Uganda and Tanzania. As managing director of PR consultancy Affinity Consulting in 1998/99, Steve managed the crisis communications for Air 2000 and was part of the team involved in the renaming of Liverpool Airport to Liverpool John Lennon Airport. Steve is a regular speaker on a wide range of PR and marketing issues; is vice Chairman of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (travel industry group) and council member of The Public Relations Consultants Association.
Martin's aviation career spans 24 years and covers virtually every aspect of the airline business from sales and marketing to product, ground handling, operations and maintenance. In 1985 he joined Swissair and subsequently worked for Sabena. In 2003 he became a member of the Swiss International Airlines executive management board before joining Luxair in 2005. He is a member of the executive management board of the Luxair Group where he has responsibility for the business line "Airline".
Jean-Louis Colson joined the European Commission in 1985 after graduating in France in political sciences and business administration. He worked first in the Directorate General for Economic and Financial Affairs and, as from 1988, in the Directorate General for Competition especially in the merger control and State aid control fields. He was appointed Head of Unit in this Directorate General in 1997. In 2008, he moved to the Directorate General for Transport and Energy as Head of Unit "Internal Market and Competition". He was appointed Head of the Maritime Safety Unit in the Directorate General for Mobility and Transport in 2010. He is in charge of passenger rights in all modes of transport in this Directorate General since January 2012.
Caroline Green has worked in aviation and travel technology for 25 years with Marriott Hotels, Galileo, SABRE and Ryanair. Working in Reservations, Strategic Planning, Product Development, Market Research, Regulatory Affairs and Customer Services. In Ryanair for fifteen years, she was initially Chief Executive of Ryanair Direct where she set up a direct sales company and then Director of Customer Services dealing with all customer touch points for Ryanair to deliver better service at a lower cost to the 80 million passenger flying with Ryanair this year.
Luiz entered the aviation business in 1980 when he joined TAP Portugal. Within TAP he assumed several functions including as Senior Project Leader in the area of fleet management. After 10 years with TAP, in 1990 he accepted the challenge of joining a new project and was involved in the launch of a new airline company, Portugalia Airlines, where he has been ever since. His first role in the new airline was Deputy Administrator and General Manager – Operations. In 2007, after the Company's acquisition by the TAP Group, he was appointed as the airline's Chief Executive Officer. Luiz has a degree in Mechanical & Aeronautical Engineering.
Jean-Yves Grosse took over as Chairman and CEO of Régional on 1 November 2005. With the restructuring and grouping of the regional activities of the Air France Group in a new company named HOP!, Jean-Yves Grosse has now moved to an advisory position while remaining Chairman of Régional. He was Chairman of Air France Consulting from 2000 and in 2002, he then took over as manager of the Operations Control Center and Air France Crisis Management Unit. Prior to this, in 1998, he was appointed CEO of Aéropostale, Following a re-organisation of Air France in 1994, he held various positions within the organisation including Head of Social Relations for crew, Director of Crew Human Resources and finally Senior VP Human Resources. After graduating from the Ecole Polytechnique he began his career as a meterology specialist and then joined the cabinet at the Ministry of Transportation and joined Air France in 1985.
Riccardo Sciolti is Managing Director of Mistral Air (Poste Italiane group) and also holds several positions with companies within the Poste Italiane group (Chairman and Managing Director of Italia Logistica; member of the Board of SDA Express Courier and CLP – Parcel Logistics Consortium). He was Former Head of Transportation, Poste Italiane. He has been with Poste Italiane since January 2003, Riccardo Sciolti runs the group's airline (Mistral Air) as well as the group's warehouse & distribution company and holds seats in various boards throughout the group. Prior to being appointed at the helm of Mistral Air, he has been heading postal transportation activities between 2005 and 2008, with accountability over air and truck transportation linehaul, local and international networks. He previously held positions in Italy and abroad with several ocean carriers, port terminal organisations and leading air and ocean freight forwarders, such as Merzario, Contship, Sea-Land Service Inc. and Danzas-AEI (Deutsche Post group).
Janne Hattula was appointed CEO of Blue1 in July 2012. Prior to this he has worked almost 10 years within SAS Group and Blue1 holding various positions, both operational and commercial. Before moving into Blue1 he worked as a Station Manager in Helsinki and 2009 took over the Revenue Management and Network departments. The last position before entering into the CEO role, was VP Commercial at Blue1. The current CEO position includes also the COO and Accountable Manager responsibilities. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism and a range of qualifications given by IATA, JAA, CAA and other aviation organizations.