Turkish Air Appoints Bilal Ekşi Chief Executive as Kotil Resigns

  • Bilal Ekşi has been head of civil aviation since April 2011
  • Carrier this year posted worst quarterly result since 1999

Turkish Airlines, which posted losses for two straight quarters, appointed the nation’s head of civil aviation, Bilal Ekşi, as its chief executive officer.

Ekşi helped manage the reorganization of Cyprus Turkish Airlines between 2009 and 2010 before being named the director general of civil aviation in 2011. He takes over from Temel Kotil, who resigned last week with immediate effect to become the head of Turkish Aerospace Industries.

Bilal Ekşi

Source: Turkish Airlines

Kotil, who was also Turkish Airlines’s vice chairman of the executive board, served as CEO for more than a decade, expanding the company’s network to 291 destinations worldwide to compete with hubs in the Persian Gulf. Terrorist attacks across Turkey have kept tourists away and led to the carrier’s worst quarterly result since at least 1999.

The 83-year-old airline, officially known as Turk Hava Yollari AO, has a fleet of 333 planes. It postponed dozens of narrow-body jet deliveries from Airbus Group SE and Boeing Co. this month. The company’s stock declined 24 percent this year, among the top 10 worst performers on the Borsa Istanbul 100 Index.

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