Finnair Annual General Meeting 2018: Comments by the Chairman of the Board and the CEO
Jouko Karvinen, Chairman of the Board of Finnair: Finnair is more important for Finland than the company’s size indicates
CEO Pekka Vauramo: Growth continues. Together we can build a successful travel ecosystem in Finland
Jouko Karvinen, Chairman of the Board of Finnair, emphasized in his opening words the role of Finnair personnel and the right strategy as key enablers of Finnair’s successful year 2017: I would like to thank all of our 12 million customers, the entire Finnair team and our shareholders for our excellent year 2017
He also outlined the company’s targets and stressed the importance of Finnair for Finland:” We continue on our journey to become an airline that offers one of the best and most unique customer experiences in the world. Finnair’s importance for Finland is more than the profit and loss account or the balance sheet of the airline would indicate. A successful Finnair contributes to Finland’s ability to continue to function and develop as a member of the global community. It also plays a key role in Finland’s economy, and in building Finland into a growing and fascinating travel destination.“
Karvinen also outlined the prerequisites for competitiveness in his speech: “When we seek new, profitable growth, improving productivity and competitiveness continues to be our target. But it is not the only target. The primary key to success is creating a unique customer experience that exceeds that offered by our competitors, every time, to every single customer. Not just from takeoff to the landing, but all the way from home and back again. We also believe that in the world of continuous connectivity, internet of things, and learning machines, the creativity and motivation of our people to create unique digital customer experiences is more important than ever before.”
Finnair CEO Pekka Vauramo thanked the Finnair personnel for the turnaround of the company, and stressed the role of long-term strategy work. ”A big thank you for Finnair’s success goes to the entire Finnair team. It has renewed itself and turned Finnair into a modern airline. I am also delighted that during last year we have been able to offer altogether 1 000 new people a job that requires versatile competencies.
”The Asian strategy that our predecessors created in their time has been the right choice. The strategy of the past few years, built on accelerated growth, improving customer and people experience and on renewal, has taken Finnair forward. Our growth continues: We have now made decisions to receive two A350s ahead of the original delivery schedule.”
The first of these two aircraft will be delivered to Finnair in 2019 instead of 2023, as communicated earlier. The second one will be delivered in 2020 instead of 2022. The schedule for the remaining eight A350 deliveries is now the following: one in the last quarter of 2018, two in 2019, two in 2020, two in 2021 and one in 2022.
Vauramo sees a future where the Finnish travel and transportation industry can transform together with Finnair. ”Tourism to the Nordics has now really taken off. Finnair plays a significant role in bringing Asian and European travellers to Finland. Together, we can build Finland into a tourism success story.”
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Finnair flies between Asia, Europe and North America with an emphasis on fast connections via Helsinki, carrying more than ten million passengers annually. In 2017, Finnair's extensive network connects 19 cities in Asia and 7 cities in North America with over 100 destinations in Europe. The airline, a pioneer in sustainable flying, was the first European airline to fly the next-generation, eco-smart Airbus A350 XWB aircraft and it is the first airline listed in the Leadership Index of the worldwide Carbon Disclosure Project. The only Nordic carrier with a 4-star Skytrax ranking, Finnair has also won the World Airline Award for Best Airline Northern Europe for the past seven years running. Finnair is a member of oneworld, the alliance of the world's leading airlines committed to providing the highest level of service and convenience to frequent international travellers.