easyJet founder gives Board a month to put expansion on hold
easyJet founder, Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, stated the carrier has one month to place its expansion plans on hold, with the Board of Directors scheduled to discuss expansion plans at an “away day” in Jun-2010 (The Times Online, 18-May-2010). The carrier, which has 88 aircraft orders worth USD4 billion, is considering plans to exercise options for additional aircraft. Sir Stelios resigned from the position of non-executive director on the carrier’s board on 14-May-2010, along with Robert Rothenberg, a Stelios nominee. Both sit as representatives of easyGroup, a 26.2% shareholder of easyJet. Sir Stelios resigned his position in protest at the carrier’s planned rate of capacity expansion and to gain greater freedom to exercise easyGroup's rights as a shareholder. easyJet's board approved a growth rate in Jun-2009 of approximately 7.5% p/a over the medium term. He and his easyGroup holding company are also in a legal dispute with the carrier over the revenue easyJet can derive from non-ticket sources. A court hearing is scheduled for early Jun-2010 and a decision from the courts is not expected until autumn 2010.
easyJet: “My actions are all about trying to stop new orders going through on the 'away day'. I am postponing my decision to talk to other shareholders and will give the board until next month to confirm they will not be exercising options for new planes,” Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, Founder. Source: The Times Online, 18-May-2010.