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Alberto Zanot

British Airways foundation year and founder?

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Hello!

as per title, I was searching who was the founder (or first CEO) of BA.

The year should be 1974.

Thanks for the info!

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In September 1972 the UK government created the British Airways Board (BAB) to manage the two large state-owned airlines; British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) and British European Airways (BEA). The British government's BAB legally merged the two state airlines on 1st April 1974 to create British Airways.

 

You could argue the founders were any number of people in the BAB or government of the early 70s. There is list of chief executives at http://www.britishairways.com/en-gb/information/about-ba/history-and-heritage/explore-our-past/1970-1979 At time of the merger David Nicholson was head of the BA board; Henry Marking was BEA's chairman; Keith Granville was BOAC's chairman and J Ross Stainton was Managing Director (British equivalent to CEO at the time).

 

You need go back to the 1920s to find BA's true origins. BEA was always government owned, so that leaves Imperial Airways (later BOAC) that was formed by a government incentivised merger of four independent airlines, their founders could be argued to be the original founders of BA. The government took full ownership and forced another merger in 1940 during WW2 to create BOAC.

 

In the 1981, the Thatcher government appointed Lord King as BA's chairman and Colin Marshall as CEO, instructing them to make the airline profitable so it could be privatised, which occurred in February 1987 when BA was floated on the London Stock Exchange (LSE). Almost immediately after in July 1987, BA bought the UK's second largest airline, British Caledonian (BCal). You could argue they were the founders of privatised BA as it is today.

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Hello!

as per title, I was searching who was the founder (or first CEO) of BA.

The year should be 1974.

Thanks for the info!

 

I don't think you could say there was a founder as such. BA was formed by merging BEA and BOAC. The first chairman of the board was David Nicholson. Wikpiedia doesn't say who the first MD was. I don't  think they had CEOs back then...  :smile:

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