Marius Gelžinis, who has been the CEO of Lithuanian Airports since March 2018, is stepping down as the General Director as of 23 June.
M. Gelžinis took the decision to resign after assessing the fact that he had already successfully implemented all the main objectives he had set himself at the beginning of his term and that the company is now entering a new phase - as of July, it will become a joint stock company from a state enterprise.
"In recent years, Lithuanian Airports have implemented several strategically important projects - comprehensive reconstruction of the aerodromes of Vilnius and Palanga airports, passenger traffic has returned to pre-pandemic levels, preparations are underway for the construction of a new passenger departure terminal in Vilnius, and the expansion of Kaunas Airport. I thank Marius Gelžinis, Head of Lithuanian Airports, for his work and dedication. New challenges and new jobs await the company as it moves into a new phase and soon will become a joint stock company," said Minister of Transport and Communications Marius Skuodis.
"With the change in the legal status of the company, a new beginning for Lithuanian Airports is underway, so I think this is a great opportunity to hand over the lead of the company to someone else. I am delighted with all the work we have done during my term and I thank the team with whom we have led the company through the fastest growth in aviation history, but also through one of the biggest crises the sector has ever faced. This year, the fastest recovery in the region only confirms that we have managed everything perfectly," says Marius Gelžinis, CEO of Lithuanian Airports.
Lithuanian Airports, uniting the country's main air gateways in Vilnius, Kaunas and Palanga, have implemented a number of important projects for the country over the last four years. The Palanga runway and apron have been completely renovated, while Vilnius Airport has undergone the largest aerodrome reconstruction in the country's history. A number of strategic management activities have also been carried out, such as the efficiency programme and the preparation of a long-term strategy until 2030. Much of this has already been implemented. For its performance in 2018, Lithuanian Airports was recognised as the most efficient state-owned enterprise in the country and in the "Lithuanian Business Leaders 500" ranking compiled by the daily newspaper Verslo žinios.
In terms of performance, it is worth considering that before the pandemic, the company had the best performance in its history. In 2019, the total number of passengers at all Lithuanian airports exceeded 6.5 million, and the highest amount of dividends was paid out to the State, which amounted to EUR 8.524 million. The recovery of the aviation sector and, by extension, of the airport sector, which is currently very strong, with some indicators even surpassing the pre-pandemic levels, shows that the strategy chosen by Lithuanian Airports is working effectively: by the end of May, Lithuanian Airports had already restored and operated more than 90% of the pre-pandemic number of destinations, and the recovery of passenger traffic has reached more than 85% of the monthly traffic in 2019.
"We thank M. Gelžinis for the fact that in conditions of great uncertainty he has managed to unite his team and consistently move towards the achievement of his goals, to reach balance between revenue and operating costs, to complete important investment projects, and to smoothly enter a period of rapid aviation recovery in 2022," says Eglė Čiužaitė, Head of the Management Board of Lithuanian Airports.
According to the Head of the Management Board, the company's next goals are to present a new business strategy until 2030, to take steps to reduce the impact of its operations on climate change and become a CO2 neutral organisation in less than a decade, to continue with the infrastructure development work that has already been started, with one of the most important of which is the new departure terminal module at Vilnius Airport, and to pursue other important strategic projects.
In early July, following the change of the company's legal status to a joint stock company, the company's Management Board will announce an international search for a new CEO.