What Aer Lingus did next

What Aer Lingus did next
Stephen Kavanagh, chief executive, Aer Lingus Pic: Fergal Phillips

Three years on from the €1.4 billion deal that fully privatised the one-time state carrier, Aer Lingus chief executive Stephen Kavanagh speaks about growth amid global turmoil, Ryanair, and the next phase of expansion for Ireland’s most recognisable company

It’s probably not polite to call Stephen Kavanagh a lifer, but that’s what he is. An airport firefighter’s son from Drimnagh in Dublin, he joined Aer Lingus in the mid 1980s as a check-in worker. He has seen the carrier from all angles, in good times and in bad, on his rise to the top: from initial public offerings, to Ryanair’s hostile takeover bids and grappling with the financial crisis, to its final sale into the hands of its new owner, one-time occupier of the Aer Lingus chief executive’s chair, Willie Walsh.

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