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Emirates Group mourns founding member Flanagan

DUBAI, May 9, 2015

The Emirates Group mourned the death of its founding member and fomer executive vice chairman Sir Maurice Flanagan, who helped build the Dubai carrier from a desert start-up to the world’s biggest international carrier.

Flanagan, 86, died on Thursday at his home in London, UK, surrounded by his family and loved ones, said a statement from the airline.

An enterprising group leader, Flanagan navigated the carrier for more than a quarter century - through regional wars and global recessions - to turn Emirates into a premier airline and its home of Dubai into a global commercial hub.

Flanagan left British Airways in 1978 to become the director and general manager of dnata, during the early days of Dubai’s economic development.

In 1985, he led a 10-member team to launch Emirates airline with $10 million in kitty. The airline began operations on  October 25 the same year after hectic months of planning with Flanagan at its helm as the managing director.

In 1990, Flanagan was appointed group managing director of the Emirates Group. He became vice chairman and group president in July 2003, and was appointed executive vice chairman in 2006, a position he held until he retired in 2013.
 
During his career with Emirates, Flanagan saw the airline grow from a fledging two-aircraft operator into a leading international aviation player. He helped steer the group’s business divisions through many challenging periods to continually deliver growth and profits, said the Dubai-based carrier in its statement.

A thought leader in the aviation and travel industry, Flanagan was a vocal champion for the benefits of competition and innovation. He was actively involved in many industry forums, including as a member of the executive committee of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).
 
Mourning the group founding member, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the chairman and chief executive, Emirates Airline and Group said: "The Emirates Group, and Dubai, has lost a great friend today. Flanagan was a man of great character, and a legend in the aviation industry."

"He was generous with his time, forthright in his views, and a person who gave 110 per cent to everything he did. It was a great personal pleasure and privilege to have worked with him," he stated.

"On behalf of all Emirates Group staff, I express our condolences to his wife Audrey, his son Julian, and his daughters Siobhan and Claire. His contributions to dnata, Emirates, and Dubai, will always be remembered," he added.-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: UK | founder | Emirates Group |

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