Robert J. Kokonis
President & Managing Director
AirTrav Inc. co-founder Robert Kokonis has 25 years of corporate-entrepreneurial leadership experience acquired with three airlines including Air Canada, global travel management firm Carlson Wagonlit Travel®, global distribution system ("GDS") and e-Commerce leader Worldspan®, and through 80 aviation, transport and travel projects with AirTrav.
Robert led planning and investment search for a start-up airline, was recruited as CEO to build and finance CharterHub Inc., a travel technology firm, and helped exit business intelligence firm BMB Fuel to GE Aviation®. His work has taken him across North America, Europe, Russia, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Mideast.
His background has included ATC & airport charges, business planning, collective bargaining, corporate communications, e-Commerce, finance, fuel hedging and supply management, government and regulatory relations, channel marketing, operational benchmarking, procurement, product distribution, restructuring, sales and tour operations.
Under Robert's guidance, AirTrav is well equipped to address strategic and tactical issues in today's fiercely competitive environment. AirTrav helps customers position themselves effectively in an environment that continues to experience rapid transformation and restructuring.
Extensive Industry Network
Senior contacts are important, and Mr. Kokonis maintains A-list aviation, travel industry and government relationships worldwide. In the public sector, he has been retained by the Canadian Transportation Agency, Canada's Competition Bureau and Transport Canada on various legislative, policy and regulatory matters.
Internationally, he has worked with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the pan-European air traffic control agency Eurocontrol that is situated in Belgium, and with various Civil Aviation Authorities.
Significant associations have retained Mr. Kokonis including the National Airlines Council of Canada and the Air Canada Pilots Association. Of particular importance, he is a frequent commercial and finance consultant for the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Frequent Demand Commentator, Lecturer and Speaker
Robert is one of Canada's most quoted experts on aviation, aerospace and travel topics by TV, radio, print and newswire media outlets. He is one of the primary on-air aviation and aerospace commentators for Canada's 24-hour Business News Network (BNN). Recent media quotes are here.
Robert speaks annually on hedging, derivatives and corporate governance strategies to the prestigious Airfinance Journal of Aviation Finance in New York City, and to a risk management conference in Singapore. He has addressed conferences such as Aircraft Commerce Flight Ops, Association of Corporate Travel Executives, Canadian Airline Investment, and National Business Travel Association, and has lectured on a variety of aviation topcs to Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences in Helsinki, Finland, and at Ryerson University in Toronto.
Robert Kokonis holds an International MBA degree from the Helsinki School of Economics in Helsinki, Finland and a BA from The University of Western Ontario in London, Canada.