Skift Take

Another big news day for Norwegian. Given the focus on profitability, exiting the difficult domestic market in Argentina is not really surprising, but the appointment of Marty St. George is certainly a curveball.

Norwegian Air named Marty St. George as its interim chief commercial officer as part of a senior management reshuffle at the airline.

Current chief commercial officer Helga Bollmann Leknes is leaving after two years at the company having declined the opportunity to take up a different role.

St. George’s most recent role was at JetBlue. He has also worked at US Airways and United Airlines. 

“I am very pleased that Marty St. George will be joining Norwegian. Strengthening our commercial position in key markets and increasing our revenue-generating activities are key elements in our strategy of returning to profitability. I am convinced that St. George with his extensive experience from several of the biggest U.S. airlines will be an asset to Norwegian,” said acting CEO and chief financial officer of Norwegian Geir Karlsen.

Marty St. George, new interim chief commercial officer at Norwegian Airways.

The changes come only a few weeks after Norwegian named Jacob Schram as its new permanent CEO.

In October, Norwegian hinted that it would undergo significant changes to try and achieve sustainable profitability over the coming years.

Since then it has cut back on certain long-haul routes and, on the same day as its management changes, also announced the sale of its Argentinian subsidiary to JetSmart.

The deal only relates to Norwegian’s subsidiary Norwegian Air Argentina, which operates domestic flights within Argentina and will not affect Norwegian’s long-haul flights between London and Buenos Aires.

The sale price has not been disclosed.

JetSmart will assume control immediately and over the next few months the three Boeing 737s Norwegian operated in the country will return to service in Europe.

“As Norwegian moves from growth to profitability, we are taking all the necessary actions required to ensure that Norwegian is well positioned going forward. Over the past few months we have made important changes to our route network to ensure long-term profitability,” said Karlsen.

“Attaining satisfactory profitability for a relatively small domestic operation has proved difficult to achieve, given the overall situation in the country.”

Norwegian said the depreciation of the Argentinian peso had made running the company much more difficult.


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Tags: europe, jetblue airways, low-cost carriers, low-cost long-haul, norwegian

Photo credit: A Norwegian Boeing 737-800. The company has reshuffled its senior management team. Norwegian

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