Virgin Australia’s Chief Executive Officer Paul Scurrah will step down from his role in the coming weeks, the airline said in a statement posted on its website.
Scurrah will step down when the airline is formally handed over to US private equity group Bain Capital in early November. Former Jetstar boss Jayne Hrdlicka will take over as CEO.
“Over the last 18 months, I have had the great privilege of being the CEO and Managing Director of the Virgin Australia Group,” Scurrah said in a statement released by Virgin Australia.
“Whilst it has been the most challenging time in aviation history, I have continued to be so proud of the way my team and our entire organisation has fought to save this airline and to keep competition alive and well in Australia.
“We have succeeded in not just ensuring the future of the company, but also reset the business to ensure it is well placed to deliver for Bain Capital for many years to come.
“Having seen the company through Covid-19, voluntary administration, the sale to Bain Capital and the redesign of the business, I will be stepping down as CEO and Managing Director at financial close of the DOCAs. I have made this decision after some long discussions with my family. The time feels right, and I know the business will be in good hands.
Vaughan Strawbridge, one of the Deloitte administrators that oversaw the airline’s voluntary administration process and helped secure its deal with Bain Capital, denied plans that the airline will become a low-cost carrier in the future.
“I know there has been speculation about the shape of the airline into the future, and I have reaffirmed with Bain Capital that Virgin Australia will not be repositioned as a low-cost carrier. Virgin Australia will be a ‘hybrid’ airline, offering great value to customers by delivering a distinctive Virgin experience at competitive prices. This will appeal to the full spectrum of travellers, from premium corporate through to more budget-focused customers,” said Strawbridge.