Bob Cummings, to lead ultra-low-cost airline

Ed Sims joins WestJet as EVP, Commercial

CALGARY, April 28, 2017 /CNW/ - WestJet today announced the appointment of Bob Cummings as Executive Vice-President responsible for the yet-to-be-named ultra-low-cost carrier (ULCC) which will launch late in 2017 or early 2018. Bob will have accountability for all aspects of this new venture, including planning, branding, pricing, product development and operationalization. He will also continue to drive other key strategic initiatives for WestJet. Bob has been with WestJet since 2005, with almost 11 years at the EVP level with a variety of responsibilities. 

"Bob has been an integral part of the successful transformation of WestJet," said Gregg Saretsky, WestJet President and CEO. "We are well positioned to continue our profitable growth and I look forward to Bob's strategic thinking, leadership and execution capability coming to bear in launching this exciting new airline.

"I am eager to bring our ULCC to market on behalf of Canadians looking for even lower fares," commented Bob Cummings. "I firmly believe that we have the necessary capabilities to launch another successful and exciting chapter in WestJet's history. Travellers can expect a very different approach from this new ULCC, yet one that will ultimately provide air travel accessibility to many more Canadians."

WestJet also announced today the appointment of Ed Sims as Executive Vice-President, Commercial, with responsibility for all aspects of the commercial function within WestJet including sales, marketing, product, network planning, revenue management, corporate development, airline partnerships and WestJet Vacations. Ed will join WestJet on May 29, 2017.

Ed's career spans more than 30 years in the tourism and aviation industries, encompassing airlines and tour operators, as well as air traffic control. He has worked in the European and Australasian markets, holding senior commercial and general leadership positions within: Tui, Thomas Cook, Virgin Groups and Air New Zealand where he headed up the international wide-body business. His most recent role was as CEO of Airways, New Zealand's air navigation service provider.

"Ed brings to WestJet extensive expertise in leadership, innovation, sales and marketing, operations and change management, and I am delighted to have someone with his experience and skills join our leadership team," continued Gregg Saretsky. "As we expand WestJet's horizons, I look forward to Ed's global perspective and contributions to our growth plans."

"WestJet has built a reputation that is globally recognized," said Ed Sims. "I have watched the WestJet success story from afar and now I am honoured to be given the opportunity to shape the next chapter in WestJet's history."

About WestJet
We are proud to be Canada's most trusted airline, powered by an award-winning culture of care and recognized as one of the country's top employers. WestJet, and our regional airline, WestJet Encore, offer scheduled service to more than 100 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean and Europe. Through our partnerships with airlines representing every major region of the world, we offer our guests more than 150 destinations in more than 21 countries. Leveraging WestJet's extensive network, flight schedule and remarkable guest experience, WestJet Vacations delivers affordable, flexible travel experiences with a variety of accommodation options for every guest. Members of our WestJet Rewards program earn WestJet dollars on flights, vacation packages and more. Our members use WestJet dollars towards the purchase of WestJet flights and vacations packages on any day, at any time, to any WestJet destination with no blackout periods  ̶  even on seat sales. For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com.  

Recent recognition includes:
2017 Best Airline in Canada and Travellers' Choice Winner Mid-Sized and Low Cost Airlines – North America (TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice awards for Airlines)
2016 Canada's Most Trusted Airline (Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria)
2016 Canada's most reputable company for Corporate Social Responsibility (Reputation Institute)
2016/2015/2014/2013/2012 Ranked top three for Canadian Brands (Canadian Business Magazine)
2016/2015/2014/2013 WestJet RBC World Elite MasterCard ranked #1 in Canada (MoneySense magazine)
2015/2011/2010/2008/2007/2006/2005 Canada's Most Admired Corporate Culture (Waterstone Human Capital)
2015 Best Employers in Canada (Aon Hewitt

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SOURCE WestJet

For further information: Media contacts: To contact WestJet media relations, please email media@westjet.com.

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