Former executives of American Express and United Airlines will lead the sales team for OpenSkies, the new transatlantic airline from British Airways, the carrier announced today.
The carrier named Ron DiLeo, former American Express senior vice president and general manager of Business Travel Europe, as senior vice president of marketing and sales. Prior to joining OpenSkies, DiLeo, a longtime agency executive, joined Amex after it acquired travel management company Rosenbluth International (BTNonline, Jan. 27, 2004)
Joe Laughlin was named vice president of North American sales. Laughlin held positions at United Airlines for 34 years, including vice president of reservations and vice president of sales, prior to resigning in 2003 (BTNonline, June 9, 2003)
. He subsequently joined flight information provider Official Airline Guide.
The carrier also appointed industry veteran Chris Vukelich as vice president of distribution and e-commerce; Tracy Sanford, formerly director of advertising and promotions at JetBlue Airways, as vice president of marketing; and Jonathan Rossman, a former Sabre Holdings business analyst, as manager of revenue management.
OpenSkies earlier this month was given approval by the U.S. Department of Transportation to launch service between Paris Orly and New York's JFK International Airport, as well as a codeshare arrangement with all-premium-class carrier L'Avion, which connects Newark Liberty International Airport and Orly (BTNonline, May 16)
. The carrier plans to begin service June 19.