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Who is Ilker Ayci? 10 things you need to know about new Air India CEO & MD

Who is Ilker Ayci? 10 things you need to know about new Air India CEO & MD

Ayci will take charge as CEO and MD of Air India on or before April 1, 2022.

Ayci's appointment is subject to regulatory approvals, the company said. Ayci's appointment is subject to regulatory approvals, the company said.

Tata Sons on Monday announced that former Turkish Airlines Chairman Ilker Ayci has been appointed as the CEO and MD of Air India. Tata Group had officially taken over the airline on January 27. 

Ayci will take charge as CEO and MD of Air India on or before April 1, 2022. However, his appointment is subject to regulatory approvals, the company said. This decision to appoint Ayci was taken on Monday following a board meeting, in the presence of 'special invitee' N Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons. 

On this occasion, Ilker Ayci, said, "I am delighted and honored to accept the privilege of leading an iconic airline and to join the Tata Group" 

"Working closely with my colleagues at Air India and the leadership of the Tata Group, we will utilize the strong heritage of Air India to make it one of the best airlines in the world with a uniquely superior flying experience that reflects Indian warmth and hospitality," he added. 

Here are ten things you should know about the new Air India CEO: 

  1. Ilker Ayci was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1971. Ayci is an alumnus of Bilkent University's Department of Political Science and Public Administration. After graduating from Bilkent University in 1994, he served as a researcher in the Department of Political Sciences at Leeds University in the U.K. 
  2. Ayci completed an International Relations Master's program at the Marmara University in Istanbul in 1997. 
  3. For a period starting from 1994, Ayci was the advisor of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was the mayor of Istanbul at that time. Erdogan is now the president of Turkey. 
  4. Starting from 1994, Ayci was assigned several positions in Kurtsan Ilaclar A.S., Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Universal Dis Ticaret A.S., respectively. 
  5. Ayci has served as a general manager in Basak Sigorta A.S. between 2005-2006, and then in Gunes Sigorta A.S. between 2006 and 2011, according to the Turkish news agency Anadolu Agency
  6. Ayci was appointed as the Chairman of The Republic of Turkey Investment Support and Promotion Agency in January 11.
  7. In February 2013, he was appointed as the vice president of the World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies. In January 2014 he was appointed as its chairman. He held this position till 2015, told the agency.
  8. Ilker Ayci served as an executive board member of Turkish Airlines until April 2015 after which he was appointed as the Chairman of the airlines. On January 26, 2022, Ilker Ayci resigned from his position as chairman of Turkish Airlines, a day before Tata Group was handed over Air India. 
  9. In November 2020, Japan awarded the Order of the Rising Sun to Ayci. 
  10. On 19 November 2018, Ilker Ayci married lawyer and sports commentator Tugçe Saatman, At the wedding, Turkish president Erdogan acted as one of the witnesses. 

Also read: Former Turkish Airlines Chairman Ilker Ayci named Air India CEO, MD