WFS names Smyth as new chief executive

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Worldwide Flight Services (WFS) has appointed former Menzies Aviation chief Craig Smyth as its new chief executive – replacing Olivier Bijaoui who stepped down from the position in July.

Smyth will take the helm at the global cargo and ground handler on 29 August. He was the former chief executive officer of Menzies, where he spent 20 years.

WFS was taken over by Platinum Equity in October last year and has made a few acquisitions since, buying a 51 per cent stake in Fraport Cargo Services and purchasing US cargo handlers Consolidated Aviation Services in January.

Platinum Equity’s head of the European investment team, Bastian Lueken says: “Craig has the right combination of leadership skills and industry expertise to build on WFS’s success and deliver on our long-term goals for the company.

“He is one of the most experienced and respected executives in the aviation services industry and has proven himself over a distinguished 20 year career.”

Smyth says he’s eager to get started and to contribute to the company’s momentum: “I’m thrilled about the opportunity to join WFS, an ambitious and fast growing company with a sterling reputation for customer service.

“I look forward to engaging right away and working with our customers, employees and partners to help move the business forward and maximize its potential.”

He said he’s especially excited to relocate to Paris where he will be stationed at WFS’s Charles de Gaulle offices in Roissy.

WFS has also appointed Francois Mirallie as group chief financial officer. He will also start on 29 August. Lueken says: “François has proven expertise in building and managing world-class finance teams and in helping to lead growing companies through exciting transitions.

“He’s a highly regarded French executive with global experience and has worked extensively with private equity sponsors to help build thriving businesses.”