Incoming Airbus Americas chairman and CEO Jeff Knittel
Airbus has named Jeff Knittel, a longtime veteran of the commercial aircraft leasing business, as the new chairman and CEO of Airbus Americas.
Knittel will formally take over Jan. 12, 2018, replacing retiring CEO Barry Eccleston, who has led Airbus’ business in the Americas since 2005. Eccleston will officially leave Airbus Feb. 28, 2018. Allan McArtor, who has been the chairman of the Airbus Americas board since 2001, will remain with Airbus as chairman emeritus of Airbus Americas.
Knittel is CEO of C2 Aviation Capital, the former aircraft leasing arm CIT Group that was acquired by Irish lessor Avolon earlier this year for $10.4 billion.
Knittel, who had been with CIT since 1986, had been president of CIT Transportation Finance prior to the Avolon transaction.
“Knittel will be responsible for Airbus’ commercial aircraft business throughout the Americas, as well as for providing leadership for the company’s helicopters and space and defense businesses in North America,” Airbus said in a statement. Airbus Americas, based in Herndon, Virginia, has more than 5,000 employees.
“Airbus has an extraordinary record of achievement in the Americas—especially over the last several years—but it’s clear that its greatest opportunities still lie ahead,” Knittel said.
Significantly, Airbus opened an A320 family final assembly line in Mobile, Alabama in September 2015. Airbus began delivering aircraft from the Mobile facility to US customers in April 2016.
(Aaron Karp - ATWOnline News)