(29 Apr 2021) Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) has appointed Anko van der Werff as President and CEO, effective 15 July 2021 at the latest.
The airline has also appointed Karl Sandlund, CCO, as acting President and CEO, effective immediately.
Rickard Gustafson will hand over to the acting CEO in May.
Anko is a 45-year-old Dutch national who has enjoyed an outstanding career in the global airline industry. He currently leads the airline group at Avianca Holdings in Colombia.
“I am very honored to be the new CEO of SAS,” Anko said. “SAS is the leading carrier of Scandinavia with a strong brand and a proud aviation history which has been of great importance for connecting the region domestically and with the rest of the world. I’m also thrilled to be returning to Scandinavia. I have very fond memories of my four years here, both from a professional perspective but also as a family since our oldest two children were born here. I am looking forward to continuing the excellent sustainability journey that SAS has started and that I believe will be instrumental for transforming the airline industry. I am eager to getting to know the team, the different stakeholders and to get started. It is no secret that Covid-19 has impacted the entire aviation industry, but SAS has a strong foundation to build upon and I am sure that by working together between all stakeholders, SAS will come out stronger.”
Prior to joining Avianca, Anko worked as Executive Vice President & Chief Commercial Officer of AeroMexico and before that was SVP Pricing & Revenue Mgt at Qatar Airways. He has also worked with Air France and KLM.
Anko speaks fluent Dutch, English and Spanish, and has a basic understanding of Italian, French and Swedish.