Former senior Qantas executive Rob Gurney has been named the new chief executive of the oneworld airline marketing alliance.
Gurney is expected to begin in his new role in October, oneworld said in a statement on Wednesday. He takes over from Bruce Ashby, who is stepping down after five years in the role.
Currently, Gurney is senior vice president for commercial operations in The Americas for Emirates, having joined the airline in 2014 as its divisional vice president for Austalia and New Zealand.
Previously, Gurney worked at oneworld alliance member Qantas from 1997 to 2012 in a number of roles, including as head of international sales and as the airline’s group executive for commercial.
The dual Australian and UK national was also chief executive of travel agency group Helloworld for two years after he left Qantas. He also worked for British Airways, another oneworld member, prior to joining Qantas.
“In many ways, this move feels like coming home,” Gurney said in a statement.
“I look forward to working once again with oneworld’s stable of best-in-class carriers from each region to build further on oneworld’s position as the best alliance in the skies.”
oneworld governing board chairman Ivan Chu said Gurney had “all the attributes needed to lead the world’s most highly prized global alliance” through the next phase of its development.
“Bruce Ashby leaves big shoes to fill – and, in Rob Gurney, oneworld has appointed someone well able to do so,” said Chu, who is chief executive of Cathay Pacific.
“He takes on the role of oneworld CEO with a proven track record of successful leadership in key alliance and broader commercial roles within both the oneworld family and beyond.”