British Airways has hired a new chief operating officer, part of a management reshuffle that comes as the airline struggles to handle a spate of disruption and cancellations.
René de Groot will join the airline from Dutch flag-carrier KLM in October, according to an internal email sent to BA staff by chief executive Sean Doyle.
De Groot, who held the same position at KLM, will be charged with rebooting BA’s flagging operations following a testing summer that has led to the airline cancelling thousands of flights because of staff shortages.
“As you can imagine, René is very familiar with the issues that we’ve been grappling with . . . I am confident that René will help us to rebuild our airline and become a better BA,” Doyle wrote in the email.
The new hire comes after Doyle unveiled a string of senior management changes in the spring, which included splitting the role of chief operating officer into two.
Incumbent Jason Mahoney moved to the position of chief technical officer, while de Groot will take responsibility for day-to-day operations.
This week Peter Bellew, chief operating officer at easyJet, resigned after the airline faced its own set of operational failures this summer.