Parent company of British Airways, Iberia to get new CEO

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Willie Walsh

FILE – In this file photo dated Monday, June 2, 2014, Willie Walsh, chief executive officer for International Airlines Group, speaks during a panel discussion of the 70th International Air Transport Association (IATA) in Doha, Qatar. International Airlines Group, the parent company of British Airways, said Thursday Jan. 9, 2020, that its longtime CEO Willie Walsh is stepping down. (AP Photo/Osama Faisal, FILE)

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The parent company of British Airways and Iberia said Thursday that its longtime CEO Willie Walsh is retiring.

International Airlines Group, or IAG, said in a statement that Iberia’s chief executive, Luis Gallego, will replace Walsh.

Launched in 2011, IAG says it serves more than 268 destinations and carries 113 million passengers each year. It made a net profit of 2.9 billion euros ($3.2 billion) in 2018, the last full year for which figures are available.

IAG is continuing to expand, announcing last September it had agreed to buy Spanish rival Air Europa for 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion).

Strikes have recently disrupted services at British Airways, however.

IAG’s share price on the London stock exchange rose more than 1% to 625.20 pounds after the announcement.

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