Published: 2018-01-04 18:20:06 CET
Icelandair Group hf.
Changes board/management/auditors

New Organisational Structure at Icelandair Group

  • Business activities will be divided into two segments: international flight operations and equity investments.
  • New Organisational Chart to support the Company´s Core Business and Growth
  • New Executive Committee

As disclosed in an announcement by Icelandair Group on 15 November 2017, the Company’s structure has been revised. The result of the changes is that the operation and business activities of Icelandair Group and Icelandair are now integrated under the leadership of a single executive director, and the financial divisions of the companies have been merged. In addition, IGS and Icelandair Cargo will form a part of Icelandair following the restructuring.

The change sharpens the Company’s focus on its core business, and the integration is also a step in the direction of improved streamlining and efficiency. Lines of communication will be shorter and management leaner. Following these changes, the Company has reduced the number of senior managers by four in recent months. 

The decision has now been made to introduce a new organisation chart for the Company that reflects these changes in emphasis and will support the Company’s growth going forward. The business activities of the Company will now be divided into two segments: on the one hand international flight operations and on the other hand equity investments. The Company’s flight operations play the most prominent role in the business activities and performance of the Group, and it is important for the structure of the Company to reflect this reality.

CEO Björgólfur Jóhannsson: “The Company has grown rapidly in recent years; the number of our destinations has grown, our scope of operations and turnover have grown, our fleet has grown, and our staff has grown. Other business has also expanded vastly, and the Group has multiplied in size and scope. With the current changes we are restructuring the company to sharpen the focus on its core business of international flight operations, where we see extensive opportunities for the future. The Company’s new Executive Committee is composed of extremely able people with a diverse range of education and experience, both within the Company and from other venues. I have extremely high hopes for the competent team that is now set to take on the task of leading our cohesive and united staff into the exciting times that lie ahead.”

The international flight operations will be divided into five divisions: Finance, Business Development and Strategy, Human Resources, Operations and Sales and Marketing,

Areas of responsibility of the Finance Division will include budgeting and financing for the Company, risk management, strategic planning and analysis, investor relations, asset management, business intelligence and accounting. Chief Financial Officer will be Bogi Nils Bogason. He has served as Icelandair Group's Chief Financial Officer since October 2008 and is already a member of the Company’s Executive Committee.

Human Resources will be responsible for the design and implementation of the Company’s human resource strategy. This includes oversight of appointments, staff training and career development. Chief Human Resources Officer will be Elísabet Helgadóttir, who joins Icelandair Group from Íslandsbanki, where she has served as head of career development.

Operations will be responsible for the Company’s entire flight operation business, maintenance and engineering work, quality control and security. Chief Operations Officer will be Jens Þórdarson. He has served as managing director of Icelandair’s Technical Division in recent years.

Business Development and Strategy will be responsible for the Company’s strategy and its implementation. Among its other tasks, the division will be responsible for development of the Company’s Route Network, strategic projects, digital development and data processing, and product development. Chief Business Development and Strategy Officer will be Birna Ósk Einarsdóttir, who joins the Company from Landsvirkjun, where she has served as Executive Vice-President of Marketing and Business Development.

Sales and Marketing will be responsible for the Company’s sales and marketing work in all markets. In addition, the division will be responsible for trade marks, revenue control, pricing, customer experience and ancillary revenue. Gudmundur Óskarsson will be Chief Commercial Officer. He has been Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Icelandair since last spring.

The Chief Officers of the five divisions will form the Company’s Executive Committee, together with Björgólfur Jóhannsson, CEO and Magnea Thorey Hjalmarsdóttir, Managing Director of Icelandair Hotels, who are both current members of the Executive Committee, along with Gunnar Már Sigurfinnsson, Managing Director of Icelandair Cargo and Jens Bjarnason. Jens has served as Senior Vice President of Operation and has been entrusted with special tasks relating to Corporate Affairs, including relations with regulatory authorities in the air transport sector and international relations.

The Company’s investments are of two kinds; on the one hand in aeronautical activities and on the other hand in tourism in Iceland. Aeronautical activities comprise the subsidiaries Air Iceland Connect, Loftleidir Icelandic and Vita. The Company’s investments in tourist services in Iceland are the companies Iceland Travel and Icelandair Hotels. 

Information about new members of the Company´s Executive Committee

Birna Ósk Einarsdóttir has served as Executive Vice-President of Marketing and Business Development for Landsvirkjun. She worked as an executive for the IT company Síminn from 2011, most recently as head of sales and services. Birna worked for Síminn from 2001, starting in public relations and HR. She led Síminn’s Project Management Office in 2006 to 2010 and concurrently managed market affairs in 2009 to 2010 until she accepted the post of executive officer. Birna has served on the board of directors of Skeljungur hf. since 2015 and Já ehf. Since 2017.  She served on the board of directors of Farsímagreiðslur ehf., a mobile payment service provider, from 2012 to 2015  and on the board of directors of Gildi Pension Fund from 2014 to 2015. Birna has a degree in business from the University of Reykjavik and an M.Sc. In management and strategic planning from the University of Iceland; she has also completed a programme of AMP studies for managers at the IESE Business School in Barcelona.

Elísabet Helgadóttir has worked in human resource management at Íslandsbanki since 2007 and as head of career development for the past five years. Her tasks at Ísandsbanki included supervision of all staff education and training, management training, executive coaching and performance management. From 2000 to 2007, she worked for Capacent Gallup on research and consultancy, Elísabet completed a B.A. Degree in psychology at the University of Iceland in 2000 and a degree in human resource management at the EADA Business School in Barcelona in 2007.

Gudmundur Óskarsson has worked as SVP of Icelandair’s Sales and Marketing division since March of last year. He joined Icelandair from Air Iceland, where he had been in charge of marketing and sales since 2016. Gudmundur worked for Icelandair from the year 2004, primarily as head of marketing and business development, until 2016. Before that, he was head of marketing at Icelandair, first for Central Europe and then Scandinavia, serving these markets for two years respectively. He was head of procurement and markets at Vatnsvirkinn/Tækjatækni from 2002 to 2003.  Gudmundur serves on the board of directors of the LAVA Centre in Hvolsvöllur in South Iceland. He has served on a number of boards and councils in the Icelandic tourist sector in recent years. He holds B.Sc. and B.A. degrees in business and international relations from Pennsylvania State University and a diploma from Universität Leipzig in Germany.

Gunnar Már Sigurfinnsson was appointed Managing Director of Icelandair Cargo in May 2008. Before that time he was SVP of Sales and Marketing at Icelandair from 2005. Gunnar Már became Director of Sales Planning and Control in 2000, and in 2001 he became General Manager of the Germany, Netherlands & Central Europe regions. Gunnar Már has a degree in Business from the University of Iceland.

Jens Bjarnason joined Icelandair as a structures engineer in 1984. For a period of time, he was Director of Safety Regulation for the Icelandic CAA. He served as Icelandair‘s Director of Flight Operations for one decade during 1996-2005 and later as Vice President of Technical Operations from 2005-2011. From 2011 until 2015 he was Director of Operations for the International Air Transport Association, IATA, in Montreal, Canada. Jens holds a PhD degree in Engineering from Northwestern University in Illinois, USA.

Jens Thórdarson has served as VP Technical Operations since October 2011. He has worked at the company since 2006, first as an assitant to Managing Director at ITS, an Icelandair subsidiary. After that he was Director Finance and Resources at Icelandair’s Technical Division from 2007 to 2010, when he accepted a post as head of the Materials and Procurement department. Jens is an industrial engineer and completed his M.Sc. degree in the spring of 2007 at the University of Iceland.

For further information please contact

Björgólfur Jóhannsson, President and CEO, tel: +354-896-1455.


Organisational Structure Icelandair Group.pdf