Darby’s Caribbean plunge

Senior Unisys consultant Mark Darby is joining Caribbean inter-island carrier Liat as its chief executive, replacing Garry Cullen, who is returning to his native country to become the chief executive of fast-growing Irish regional Aer Arann.

Darby, who has been managing partner at Unisys Transportation Consulting for the past three years, has held senior positions at IBM, Deloitte and SH&E. Prior to this experience, which included assignments on cost reduction and performance improvement, and with Middle East carriers on business transformation, he was an aircraft engineering manager at BA, British Caledonian and Laker Airways.

“The challenge at Liat is to build on the transformation started by the management team, to energise the business and give it the success it deserves,” says Darby. The troubled Antigua-based carrier, which celebrates its 50th anniversary next year, has lost money for 48 of these years. It operates a fleet of 14 Bombardier Dash 8 turboprops on routes around the Caribbean.

Cullen, who spent 30 years at Aer Lingus, latterly as its chief executive, has been brought in by Aer Arann owner and chairman Padraig O’Ceidigh who is stepping down from the CEO role. But O’Ceidigh will remain “actively involved” in the company in his new post as executive chairman.

Aer Arann has been on a rapid growth path since reinventing itself as a low-fares regional carrier in 2001. It operates a fleet of 14 ATR turboprops within Ireland and to Europe, and has more on order.

Source: Airline Business