‘I wanted to prove that I wasn’t just a daddy’s boy’: easyJet founder on building a legacy

Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the son of a shipping magnate, set out to prove he could make it on his own as well as build a world-famous brand by setting up an airline. It was called easyJet. Here he talks exclusively to the Business Post

Stelios Haji-Ioannou, founder of easyJet: he was once the face of his company, but rarely gives interviews these days. Plcture: Bloomberg

On May 22, 1998, ten people walked into Stansted airport in London with tickets for the inaugural flight of Go Fly, the low-cost airline being launched that day by British Airways.

Dressed in fluorescent orange boiler suits, the group was led by Stelios Haji-Ioannou, the founder and then owner of easyJet, and they were there to gatecrash Go Fly’s launch in a defiant act of guerrilla marketing.

Having boarded the flight, which was bound for ...