The Philippine unit of Southeast Asia’s largest budget carrier on Friday announced changes in leadership after the airline’s chief executive resigned from her post.
Philippines AirAsia Inc. appointed Captain Dexter Comendador as interim chief executive effective July 30, replacing Joy Cañeba who resigned after three years of service in the company.
Comendador has over 34 years of experience in the aviation industry as officer of Philippine Air Force and commercial pilot for several airlines.
He joined Philippines AirAsia in 2011 as director of flight operations and was promoted to chief operating officer in 2015.
“We are pleased that Captain Dexter has agreed to step into the interim CEO role and we are excited about the important change and strategic direction that we are committed to bring for our guests and travelers here and abroad. We remain focused on driving solid growth with emphasis on quality and innovation,” said Philippines AirAsia chairperson Maan Hontiveros.
Philippines AirAsia has reached a turnaround phase with revenue and passenger load improving year-on-year.
The number of guests carried in 2015 increased significantly, enabling the airline to boost its passenger load from 70 percent in 2014 to 81 percent.
The airline recently expanded its network in China with the addition of the Manila-Shanghai route on June 10.
“We would like to thank Joy for her valuable contributions over the past years. Her leadership has driven Philippines AirAsia to grow and expand from strength to strength. We are fortunate to have Captain Dexter serve as interim CEO as we continue to build our presence in the market,” AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes said.
Joy Cañeba said she was plesed to lead and work with the comnmpany.
“I have no doubt that under Captain Dexter’s leadership, the team will continue to succeed. I am thankful for the support of the stockholders,” she said.
Cañeba has served the company as legal head, chief operating officer and chief executive officer in the last three years. She was appointed CEO in April 2014. She will resume her post as partner at the Santiago, Gaspar, Caneba & Franco law firm.
The airline currently has 12 operating aircraft servicing domestic destinations, such as Kalibo (Boracay), Puerto Princesa (Palawan), Tagbilaran (Bohol), Cebu and Tacloban. They also fly to China, Korea, Macau and Hong Kong.
Malaysia’s Air Asia, through AA International, owns 40 percent of Philippines’ Air Asia Inc., while Filipinos Marriane Hontiveros, Michael Romero, Antonio Cojuangco and Alfredo Yao hold the balance of 60 percent.