Kenya Airways (KQ) has announced the resignation of the only KLM representative on its board. Jozef Bernadus Veenstra stepped down from the Kenya Airways board during the company’s AGM on 25th June 2021.
The 54-year-old director joined the board of Kenya Airways in February 2017 after the resignation of KLM CEO, Pieter Elbers, from the board. Jozef Bernadus Veenstra served as a non-executive director and the only representative of the Dutch Airline on the KQ board for four years and four months.
His resignation is the second high profile exit of a KLM officer from Kenya Airways in the last two years. In June 2019, Jan de Vegt quit as KQ’s Chief Operating Officer after “Kenya Airways decided to stop all support by KLM,” he tweeted.
While announcing the resignation of Jozef Bernadus Veenstra, KQ said that KLM is still a critical shareholder of Kenya Airways.
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines currently owns a 7.8% stake in Kenya Airways. The Dutch airline previously owned 26.73% of the national airline but its ownership fell to 7.8% after a debt restructuring program in November 2017. Following the restructuring program, KLM was relegated to have one member on the Kenya Airways board of directors, down from two members.
In December 2020, KQ announced the end of its two-decade partnership with Air France KLM. Kenya Airways and Air France KLM entered into an agreement in 1995, that improved their customers’ ability to connect from Europe to 26 destinations in Africa. According to Kenya Airways, the two airlines mutually agreed to terminate the partnership in September 2021.
Allan Kilavuka, Kenya Airways CEO said, “This development allows Kenya Airways to offer additional options and convenience to customers connecting through our European getaways in line with our goals of supporting international tourism in Kenya and connecting Africa to the world”.
Also read: Kenya Airways Chief Operating Officer quits