A little more than a month after Des Vertannes, the global head of cargo for the International Air Transport Association, announced his retirement, there has been no word of his replacement, but IATA Director General Tony Tyler pledged that “we will let the world know soon.”
Vertannes’ job is one of the most visible in cargo, and for the past four years, he has been responsible for uniting forwarders, airlines and the rest of the industry under a few common goals. He is to retire in June, and speculation has been swirling about whether the position will be filled internally by someone else working for IATA on the cargo side, or by an external cargo leader.
“Des’ shoes will be very difficult to fill. Certainly, I recognize the importance of air freight to the aviation industry and the leadership role at IATA; I think Des has made it, during his incumbency, a very important role,” Tyler said Wednesday at the 2014 CNS Partnership Conference in San Antonio, Texas.
Tyler — who added that Vertannes set the industry “moving forward in a much more cooperative way than we were before” — said Vertannes told him of his decision in January.
“He leaves a good legacy,” Tyler said. “Whomever takes over is going to have a very full agenda and a full set of accountabilities to build on his great work.”