Sydney Airport names new chief executive

An aerial image of Sydney Airport. (Sydney Airport)
An aerial image of Sydney Airport. (Sydney Airport)

Sydney Airport has named a long time General Electric executive as its new chief executive, replacing Kerrie Mather.

The company has announced Geoff Culbert, an Australian, will commence as its chief executive by the end of January 2018.

Mather will continue in the role of chief executive until Culbert’s arrival, Sydney Airport said on Tuesday.

Currently, Culbert is president and chief executive of GE for Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, a position he has held since 2014. The company has businesses in the oil and gas, power and water, aviation, healthcare, transportation and lighting industries in this part of the world

The University of Melbourne graduate has worked at GE in various roles since 2002, including as general counsel for GE Capital for Australia and New Zealand and GE Capital Asia based in Japan, according to his profile on the GE website.

Sydney Airport chairman Trevor Gerber said Culbert was appointed after a “rigorous global search” and would bring extensive commercial and operational experience to the role.

Further, Gerber said the incoming chief executive also had “strong and established relationships with many of Sydney Airport’s key airline and business partners, and across all levels of government”.

“Geoff impressed the Board with his commitment to contributing to the social and economic development of Sydney, NSW and Australia, his interest in public policy and lifelong passion for aviation,” Gerber said in a statement.

Incoming Sydney Airport chief executive Geoff Culbert. (GE)
Incoming Sydney Airport chief executive Geoff Culbert. (GE)

“Aviation is one of the most dynamic and fast changing industries in the world. Geoff embraces innovation and technology and this ongoing focus will position Sydney Airport for future success.

Culbert said he was looking forward to the new role.

“I believe Sydney Airport is ideally placed to meet our growing aviation needs,” Culbert said.

“I am also excited about the contribution the Airport makes to the broader economy. If we continue to capture the increasing demand for travel, particularly from developing markets, the flow on benefits for the NSW and Australian economy will be huge.”

Having led Sydney Airport since 2002, Mather announced she was stepping down in March.

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