Ethiopian Airlines’ Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Tewolde Gebremariam, is stepping down after more than a decade of influential leadership and propelling the airline to global prominence. He joined Ethiopian Airlines in 1985 and became CEO in 2011.
Business Insider Africa believes that Mr Gebremariam’s decision to resign was to give him enough time to focus on his health as he is being treated in a US hospital for an undisclosed illness.
The CEO explained that his doctors advised him to retire now and focus on his recovery, saying in a letter to Ethiopian Airlines staff that East Africans saw a copy of the letter, “in light of my current health concerns. and treatment, I cannot go back to the office soon. Therefore, I have decided to quit early and continue my treatment. My resignation request to the government has been accepted.
Over the past decade, we have made history together, growing our airline’s annual turnover from $1 billion to $4.5 billion, from 33 aircraft to 130 aircraft, and (and) from 3 million passengers to 12 million passengers (pre-Covid), and in total we have quadrupled the airline in all respects. “
Mr. Gebremariam has been with Ethiopian Airlines for 37 years since joining Ethiopian Airlines in 1985, taking over as CEO in 2011.
During 11 years, he led the state-owned airline through a very important transformation phase, increasing its fleet size from 50 to 130 aircraft. Ethiopian Airlines has largely become a major player on local, regional and international routes. Currently, it is the largest airline in Africa.
It has made great contributions to the development of the company and has achieved great success in the field of air transportation in Ethiopia. In 2019, the industry contributed $4.2 billion to the Horn of Africa country’s GDP.