Former US Treasury chief joins BA board

FORMER US Treasury secretary John Snow, and Telefónica chairman César Alierta, are to join the board of the newly formed International Airlines Group (IAG) as non-executive directors, it was announced yesterday.

The company, which is being formed by the planned merger of British Airways and Iberia, will create Europe’s second-largest airline by market value after Lufthansa. Under the rules of the merger, BA had to nominate a Spaniard to the board, Iberia had to choose a Briton and both had to pick someone who was neither Spanish nor British.

Alierta and Snow, an appointee of former US president George W.?Bush, are two of four new faces on the 14-member board of IAG, which will be chaired by Antonio Vázquez, current Iberia chairman.

Willie Walsh, BA chief executive, will become chief executive of IAG. Patrick Cescau, former Unilever chief executive and Kieran Poynter, former chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers are the other two non-executive directors.

Last week the merger cleared a significant hurdle when Iberia said it had decided not to exercise its right to cancel the deal over a BA employees’ pensions deficit of £3.7bn.