Struggling Spanish carrier Vueling is aiming to restore peace among its
shareholders through its latest organisational overhaul, under which
co-founders Carlos Munoz and Lazaro
Ros are stepping down from
their executive roles.
Vueling revealed yesterday that chief executive Munoz and chief
operating officer Ros are
to step down on 25 November. Vueling’s
recently appointed chairwoman Barbara Cassini is also leaving her position. All
three will continue as board members.
The moves follow a period of unrest between Vueling’s founders and its key
shareholder Grupo Planeto’s Inversiones Hemisferios
over the airline’s strategy and management.
Although details remain sketchy, a Vueling spokesman says: “The situation now is that
the principle shareholder and the company’s founders have a deal which they
have signed for peace in the company.”
Under the reshuffle Inversiones Hemisferios
has returned to board representation. It says: “We
have rejoined the board with the compromise to increase the value of the
company and seek, at all times, shareholders’ value.”
withdrew its representatives from Vueling’s
board on 24 September. The airline’s management then appointed investment bank
Rothschild to advise on its
spokesman says that the organisational revamp will be formalised during an extraordinary
general meeting on 26 November. He says a new CEO will probably be named during
the session. The airline’s strategic options are also up for discussion.
He says: “The company
is now open-minded to a number of possibilities, including a merger or
acquisition with another low-cost carrier, but this is only one of the
Munoz and Ros
will act as advisors to the carrier, but will not have an active management
role, says the spokesman. He adds that their shareholdings remain unchanged.
Munoz owns around 5% of the airline, while Ros holds a 2% stake.
In a joint statement Munoz and Ros say: “We will continue to contribute in every
way we can to the development of the company from our role as shareholders,
founders and board members.”
Josep Pique is due to succeed Barbara Cassini as independent chairman. The
spokesman says Cassini was appointed as an emergency
chairwoman, adding that the appointment was never meant to be long-term.
Budget carrier Vueling
operates intra-European services using a fleet of 24 Airbus A320s.