Brighter Skies

The Asia Pacific Aviation
Virtual Series


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The Series

What You Can Expect

Brighter Skies’ is a four-part webinar series bringing together aviation leaders and Aon subject matter experts to discuss the business, people, risk and safety of aviation organizations in the Asia Pacific region. Each session focuses on the evolution of the industry post-COVID-19 and explores what the future may bring.

All four episodes are relevant for anyone working in aviation, with an interest in how the industry is evolving.

Session #1

Return to the skies

COVID-19 has seen one of the biggest shocks, if not the biggest shock, the aviation industry has ever seen. Fleets have been grounded, borders closed and staff laid off. This opening episode of our ‘Brighter Skies’ series looks at our Return to the Skies. What has the impact been on how we fly, talent in the industry, regulations, airport infrastructure and so much more.

Click here to watch this episode

Panelists:

Gary Moran

Head of Aviation, Asia – Aon

Gary joined the aviation insurance industry in 2001 and Aon in Singapore in 2009 following a posting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Since then Gary has been responsible for leading Aon’s regional Aviation industry specialty working closely with global aviation leaders within Aon.

In 2017, Gary was elected to the position of Vice-Chairman of the Asian Business Aviation Association (AsBAA) a non-profit organisation that seeks to promote and provide a platform for communication & awareness of Business Aviation’s contribution to the regional economies in Asia. This was for a two-year period and Gary remains actively involved in the association, with particular focus on the association’s Discovery education initiative. In 2019, Gary joined the Asia Advisory Board of Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU).

Conor Doheny

777 Fleet Technical Manager - Boeing Asia Pacific Aviation Service

Conor has worked nearly all aspects of aircraft maintenance and engineering over the past 20 years, from licensed engineer, design and technical services at Ryanair and Cathay Pacific, through to program management and lease returns in customer facing roles with Boeing Asia Pacific.

He has also worked closely with airline commercial teams in a technical capacity steering standard IATA contracts, and participating at various IATA fuel forums, as part of the industry changing events surrounding Cathay Pacific flight CX780.

Kashif Khalid

Regional Director – Airports, Passenger, Cargo, Security & Facilitation, Africa & Middle East - IATA

Kashif is currently leading the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) industry activities and projects in the Middle East & Africa region providing leadership and guidance to Airlines, Airports, ANSP's, Civil Aviation Authorities, Security Agencies and Governments to further develop IATA’s mission, projects and advocacy initiatives. With a core focus on the Airports, Passenger Experience and Global Facilitation programs.

Formerly he was Head - Assets & Acquisitions at Abu Dhabi Airports, managing the Global M&A function for the Government entity as well as the development, modernization, and operations strategy of the Airports portfolio. Which included multi-billion dollar infrastructure investment and development programs, including Abu Dhabi’s crowning jewel, the iconic 700,000 sqm Midfield Terminal Building (MTB). He has advised global Governments and Airport Investors/Operators on both Greenfield and brownfield redevelopment projects, Operations & Management programs, privatizations, public private partnerships and associated infrastructure planning, development, and concessions.



 

David Best

Senior Vice President and General Manager, US Regions - Jet Aviation

David is Senior Vice President and General Manager US Operations for Jet Aviation, responsible for the Fixed Base Operation, Aircraft Management, Staffing and Charter businesses across North America along with Business Development globally. With over twenty years industry experience he has worked across the world with experience in both the business aviation and commercial aviation sectors.

In addition to his role at Jet Aviation David serves on the Board of National Air Transportation Association and Leadership Council of the National Business Aviation Association, has also served as Vice Chairman Asian Business Aviation Association and on the Governing Board of the International Business Aviation Council. David has worked and lived in Europe, Asia, and the USA throughout his business career.

Previously he served as Chief Commercial Officer based in the USA, and was Managing Director Europe, Middle East and Africa for a large FBO chain,  Prior to returning to the USA he was based in Asia where he headed up the strategic development of an aviation services and aftermarket businesses in the Region.

Dermot Mannion

Principal - Dermot Mannion Consulting

Dermot is a well-known figure in the airline industry with over 30 years of experience, operating across three continents.

He had a distinguished career at Emirates in Dubai between 1985 and 2005, rising to the position of President Group Support Services. Subsequently, he held the position of Aer Lingus CEO between 2005 and 2009, completing the privatization of the airline. More recently, in the capacity of Deputy Chairman of Royal Brunei Airlines, he played a key role in the award-winning rebranding and restructuring program of the airline.

Dermot is now a consultant based in Ireland with an involvement at advisory and board level in a number of aviation projects worldwide. He has also completed a four-year term of office on the board of the one of the largest IT companies based in Singapore.

Session #2

Where now for the changing customer value proposition

Customers and the demands they have of aviation organisations are ever evolving. COVID-19 has led to a seismic shift in these demands and the things customers value the most. Concerns around safety, risk and compliance are now major factors and decisions made around the environment, carbon footprint and thinking ‘green’ are ever growing too.

This webinar will focus on the current state of the customer value proposition and explore where the future in this area is headed.

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Panelists:

Suzanne Courtney

Strategic Growth Director - Aon’s Assessment Solutions

Suzanne studied Occupational Psychology and is specialised in the aviation industry working with Aon’s global aviation clients. Her role focuses on helping clients to make strategic workforce decisions including identifying potential for future leadership positions and ensuring the workforce is ready to evolve as the roles and business evolves.

Additionally, her role focuses on helping clients to measure culture fit, minimise risk hires, convert their assessment process to digital formats and driving positive customer experience by selecting the best candidates. She is also the commercial lead for Aon’s pilot assessment suite and a key contributor to the measurement models and tools used for selecting and developing pilots. She regularly releases thought leadership on the HR topics within the aviation industry and presents on future considerations for HR within the aviation industry at Aon’s global aviation events.

Dr. Bernard Creed

SVP, Finance - Dubai Duty Free
Board Member - Middle East Africa Duty Free Association

Bernard is a qualified Certified Public Accountant (CPA) with over 30 years of experience living and working in Ireland, Scotland, Bahrain, Dubai, the Dutch Antilles and the United States.

His career has seen him work in Textile manufacturing, Telecommunications, Private practice and the Travel retail business. Bernard has over 18 years’ experience working in the Duty-free industry, having previously worked for Bahrain Duty Free (1998-2001) and for Dubai Duty Free (2001-2007). Bernard returned to Dubai Duty Free in May 2010.

In addition to his CPA qualification, Bernard holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration, along with a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree for his work on customer behavior and purchasing patterns in an airport retail environment. Bernard is a former Chairman of The Irish Business Council in Dubai and a current board member of the Middle East and Africa Duty Free Association.

Raj Raghavan

Senior Vice President, Head of Human Resources – IndiGo

Raj leads Human Resources function at IndiGo, India’s largest airline by market share and is a key member of IndiGo’s Executive Management Committee.

Prior to this he was Amazon’s Head of Human Resources (Asia Pacific & Middle East) for their International Consumer Business and Global Technology Development Centers in the region. He joined Amazon in early 2011 as their India Director of Human Resources and supported the launch of several Amazon businesses in the country. Earlier, Raj was Head of HR for GE’s Global Research and India Technology Centers. Starting his HR career in the late 80’s, Raj has held several senior HR leadership positions across geographies in Hindustan Unilever, Ford Motor Company and HSBC.

Colm Flanagan

Head of Regional Chain Partners, APAC - Hotelbeds

Originally from Ireland and currently based in Singapore, Colm has over 20 years’ experience working in product, marketing and business development within the travel and hospitality industry, including wholesale, group buying and tour operating.

Colm is Head of Regional Chain Partners APAC for Hotelbeds, the world's largest Bedbank, offering hotels & other accommodation providers access to a network of over 60,000 B2B travel buyers such as tour operators, retail travel agents, airlines, and loyalty schemes in over 140 markets worldwide. In his role, Colm and his team focus on securing the best commercial conditions with regional hotel chains across APAC.

Prior to his current role, Colm has held a number of senior commercial leadership roles with Hotelbeds, including Regional Sourcing Director South Asia based out of Singapore, covering Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore and prior to that Regional Sourcing Director East Asia based out of HK, where he was based for 7 years, covering Japan, Korea, HK & Taiwan.

Session #3

The evolution of aviation roles and the supply of talent

The aviation industry is constantly changing and evolving. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen, possibly the largest ever shock to the industry. In this session our experts will talk about the disruption to the talent pipeline caused by COVID-19 and discuss how this impact can be mitigated. This includes addressing key questions such as whether the aviation industry will be able to fulfil its future talent needs and whether the industry can still attract and retain the best talent post-pandemic.

Our experts will also weigh in on their point of view on whether there is a need to fundamentally review our rewards and retirement strategies.

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Panelists:

Wan Hua Cheng

Organizational Psychologist - Aon’s Assessment Solutions

Wan Hua is an organisational psychologist based in Singapore. Her passion is in partnering with organisations to relook how they can make evidence-based talent decisions.

Her work focuses on how she can develop or revamp organisations’ selection and development processes to reduce risk and prepare for future disruptions. This includes collaborations with major airlines and aviation clients within Asia.

Over the last decade, Wan Hua has worked with both public service and private sector clients across the Southeast Asia region in a diverse variety of industries. This broad perspective allows her to bring new insights to clients.

Kim Chua

Instructor and Director of Student Success -
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Asia

Kim-Chua is currently an Instructor and Director of Student Success with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Asia. In addition to providing instruction in Academic and Technical Communications, she is also primarily in charge of the leadership and direction for the development and implementation of engagement, retention, diversity/inclusion and student success initiatives at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Asia.

A firm believer of global citizenry, she completed a United Nations University International Course in 2010 for UN Systems, Peace and Human Rights and collaborated with UN practitioners to propose suggestions on pressing global issues, including youth employability, gender equality, diversity and inclusion and sustainable education through the achievement of the SDGs.

More recently, she received a full sponsorship from the East-West Center in University of Hawaii to participate in the 18th run of the Asia Pacific Leadership Program where she had the opportunity to work on social innovation labs and learn from some of the world’s leading experts on adaptive leadership, crucial communications and human performance. Her own social innovation lab was exploring ways to encourage female participation in the Asian Aviation landscape.

Cristopher Magdangal

Regional Director, Asia Pacific - Alpha Aviation Group Philippines
 

Cristopher has over 25 years of management background, 16 years of which was dedicated to the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

With notable skills in strategic planning and an excellent record in academics, he was highly recommended to join AAG as the Head of Operations in 2011, became General Manager in 2014 followed by an appointment as Regional Director for Asia Pacific.

Under his leadership, AAG achieved exponential growth exemplified by increase in revenue and profitability that at some point more than quadrupled. With Product Innovation and Business Model Innovation, Cristopher was awarded the Outstanding Initiative and Creativity Award by our Parent Company in the UK. To date, he continues to make AAG an important partner for airlines in the region influencing their ways to train, recruit and employ pilots.

Cristopher is also the President and Director of Aviation Schools Association of the Philippines (ASAP) and recently elected as one of the Directors of Clark Investors and Locators Association (CILA). He graduated with BS Systems Engineering from Philippine Military Academy in 1995 as Magna Cum Laude and earned his Master of Management degree from the Asian Institute of Management.

Anjali Chatterjee

Head of People & Culture - AirAsia India

Anjali, Head of People & Culture at AirAsia India is a Global Talent Management & Development professional with 30 plus years of global experience across Hospitality, Service, Manufacturing and Telecom.

She has earlier worked in companies like Tata Communications, LG Electronics, Jet Airways etc, and across all major metros like Chennai, Delhi, Bangalore & Mumbai. She has also headed HR for MENA and APAC regions and has also worked very closely with stakeholders across US, Canada and Europe especially in areas of Talent Management and Learning & Development.

Her key focus is to facilitate the creation and deployment of effective people strategy in line with business strategy. She strongly believes that organizations with robust talent management & development strategies enable stronger business outcomes by having talent that is better than the competition.

Session #4

The future of aviation technology, aircraft and airport infrastructure

Everyone wants to know what the future holds. The final session of our ‘Brighter Skies’ series looks at this very topic and what the future holds for the aviation industry. Our session will focus on areas such as the aircraft of the future, decarbonisation is fuels, cyber security and the general evolution of the industry.

Click here to watch this episode

Panelists:

Gary Moran

Head of Aviation, Asia – Aon

Gary joined the aviation insurance industry in 2001 and Aon in Singapore in 2009 following a posting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Since then Gary has been responsible for leading Aon’s regional Aviation industry specialty working closely with global aviation leaders within Aon.

In 2017, Gary was elected to the position of Vice-Chairman of the Asian Business Aviation Association (AsBAA) a non-profit organisation that seeks to promote and provide a platform for communication & awareness of Business Aviation’s contribution to the regional economies in Asia. This was for a two-year period and Gary remains actively involved in the association, with particular focus on the association’s Discovery education initiative. In 2019, Gary joined the Asia Advisory Board of Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU).



 

Dr. Bicky Bhangu

President – South East Asia, Pacific & South Korea, Rolls-Royce

Dr Bicky Bhangu is President, South East Asia, Pacific and South Korea, responsible for the regional strategy, external relations, and governance of the operational activities across the company’s key business sectors – Civil Aerospace, Defence and Power Systems.
 
Bicky serves as Council Member on the Singapore National Employers Federation. He had served as President of the British Chamber of Commerce Singapore over several terms. In addition, he is currently on the Board of Directors of the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology.
 
Bicky has a BEng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering an MSc in Control Systems, PhD in Advanced Machines and Drives, and an MBA in Technology Management. He is a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society.



 

Jeffrey Lowe

Chief Executive Officer - Asian Sky Group Ltd. & Asian Sky Media Ltd.

Jeffrey has almost 40 years of Engineering, Marketing and Sales experience in commercial and business aviation. His most recent position is as Chief Executive Officer for Asian Sky Group Ltd. & Asian Sky Media Ltd. in Hong Kong.

Asian Sky Group is the largest business aviation consulting group in the Asia-Pacific region with 20 employees & 6 offices. Asian Sky Media is a four-time, award winning media company that assist clients with brand development and positioning, in the Asia-Pacific, plus publishes a dozen industry-leading reports on the business jet, helicopter, and charter fleets in Asia-Pacific, as well as reports on general aviation, infrastructure and training schools across the region.

Gerry Butler

Chief Marketing Officer - Merx Aviation Finance

Gerry is the Chief Marketing Officer of Merx Aviation Finance and current President of International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT). Gerry began his aviation finance career in 2002 with RBS working in Dublin, New York and London in a variety of roles including risk and origination. He then moved to Apollo Aviation (now Carlyle Aviation Partners) to establish their presence outside of the US and build out the investment platform.

Gerry is a graduate of UCD and has completed the Executive Management course at HBS.

Sandeep Malik

Chief Executive Officer, Asia Pacific - Aon, Commerical Risk Solutions, Health Solutions and Affinity

Sandeep is the CEO for Aon’s Commercial Risk, Health and Affinity businesses in Asia Pacific. He led the Asia business from 2010 to 2018, before assuming his current role. From 2014 to 2018, he also held the position of Global Head, Specialty, overseeing Aon’s Industry and Specialty Practice Groups. Sandeep is based in Singapore, Aon’s headquarters for Asia Pacific.

Over the years, Sandeep’s writings and opinions have been featured in the Economist.com, CFO and CFO Asia, The Wall Street Journal and Asahi Shinbun. Sandeep earned his Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from India, followed by a Master of Business Administration in the US.



 

Caspar Baum

Director Aviation - Surbana Jurong Private Limited

Based in Singapore Caspar is a senior airport developer with extensive experience in the aviation industry, encompassing a range of projects from new build airport facilities, optimising existing facilities and operations as well as preparing airports for special events such as the Olympic Games. Educated as a professional architect his focus is on airport Terminal facilities and Aprons including master planning, sizing, facility space programs, processing and performance requirements. He also operates passenger Terminals for special events and Peak operation. He furthermore has been involved in major airport transactions over the last decade such as Athens International Airport, Sydney International Airport and the privatization of the Portuguese Airports of the ANA Group.

Caspar is Director for Aviation with Surbana Jurong Pte in Singapore, a government corporation for engineering, township planning and infrastructure. He has a leading position for the design scope of the extensive Changi East expansion programme such as the 3rd runway, the Terminal 5 building as well as the interconnecting tunnels between today’s Changi West and the future Changi East. At present he is engaged in the Changi Terminal 5 redesign and aspects of the Post-Covid design requirements and operations.

He before was in the leadership of key projects such as Beijing’s New International Airport at Daxing, Hong Kong International Airport and KLIA.