James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has been recognized as one of the 25 most influential business travel executives by Business Travel News (BTN), the premier industry publication for corporate travel news. The 2015 list of industry honorees was announced last night at The BTN Group’s Business Travel Trends & Forecasts conference in New York City.
This year’s publication marks the 32nd annual list of Business Travel News’ most influential business travel executives. This prestigious listing recognizes those who have most influenced the business travel industry over the past year.
“BTN identified Mr. Hogan early in the year as a person to watch,” said Elizabeth West, Business Travel News’ Editor-In-Chief. “Completing Etihad’s purchase of a 49 percent stake in Alitalia last December underscored his dedication to a bold equity alliance strategy. This, along with his continued effort to place downward pressure on long-haul airfares, have earned him a spot on our annual list.”
James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, said: “Etihad Airways and our 27,000 employees worldwide are reinventing the air travel experience, bringing competition, world-class hospitality and revolutionary new products to our guests, while providing access to parts of the world that would otherwise go underserved or unserved.”
Mr. Hogan continued: “We are not about being the biggest – Etihad Airways has always been about being the best and, through our three-prong strategy of organic growth, codeshares and equity partners, Etihad Airways has been able to compete effectively with carriers much longer established and much larger in size. I thank Business Travel News and I extend my congratulations to my fellow honorees.”
Mr. Hogan was appointed President and Chief Executive of Etihad Airways in September 2006 and has more than 30 years of travel industry expertise. He has since overseen the rapid growth of the airline, which included the launch of six new routes on three continents during 2015, taking its global network of destinations to 116 with a fleet of 120 aircraft with more than 200 aircraft on firm order. The airline operates an expanding network of passenger and cargo destinations in the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas.
A key part of Etihad Airways’ unique growth strategy has been to take equity stakes in other airlines. This year, it took a 49 per cent stake in Italian carrier Alitalia, adding to minority stakes in airberlin, Jet Airways, Virgin Australia, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles and Etihad Regional.
In the past few years, Etihad Airways has made significant advances including introducing innovative services that span the globe, including its signature Airbus A380 and Boeing 787 aircraft which offer unparalleled comfort and luxury, such as The Residence by Etihad™, the only three-room suite in the sky (A380), First Class Apartments (A380), First Suites (B787) and Economy Smart Seats (A380 and B787), for its guests – of which more than 17 million are expected to travel on Etihad Airways by the end of 2015, up from almost 15 million last year.
From Abu Dhabi to the United States, Etihad Airways serves New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport with a twice daily service, including the new A380 service with The Residence™ and a daily B787 flight to Washington’s Dulles International Airport. The airline also operates flights to Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
In addition to this recognition for Mr. Hogan, Etihad Airways was just named 2016 Airline of the Year by Air Transport World. Other recent awards include Best First Class Product by Ultratravel U.S.A. readers in the 2015 Ultimate Luxury Travel Related Awards (ULTRAs) and Best Airline – Business Class by TTG Travel Awards 2015 — among many others.