Virgin Australia CEO Paul Scurrah has resigned with former Jetstar boss Jayne Hrdlicka set to replace him.
Scurrah is leaving after a tumultuous year at the carrier which will be formally handed over to US private equity firm Bain Capital next month. Scurrah will remain in his role until then.
US-born Hrdlicka was most recently president of Tennis Australia, but played a leading role behind the scenes in Bain’s takeover of the airline.
The announcement has blindsided the Transport Workers Union (TWU) which is trying to ensure the future of the airline’s 6000 workers.
TWU National Secretary Michael Kaine said Scurrah’s resignation was a “serious and worrying development”.
“We are suspending negotiations on enterprise agreements while we seek clarification on these developments,” he said.
“For our part, we are engaged in talks in good faith. If the plan and scope of the airline as outlined in August by Bain Capital has already been scrapped then this is a serious betrayal that must be addressed.”