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Karam Chand

Karam Chand 

Chief Executive Officer, Aviation Specialist, Senior Advisor and Speaker

+61 422 007 052

An experienced international business leader as CEO and CCO in various airlines across Asia/Pacific, Karam developed a strong passion for organisational and individual successes through collaborative pursuits during his 30 year career in aviation.

Transformative leadership, accountability and leading as an example is close to his heart as is his determination to succeed despite adversity.

Career History

Karam held CEO and CCO roles at Royal Brunei, whilst it was going through significant change, and he ensured selected strategies made the impact. He was a founding member for Virgin Blue, a start-up airline that brought about transformation in the Australian market in terms of services and pricing. The wide adoption of e-commerce in the travel and tourism sectors were vigorously pursued to fundamentally drive down the costs and champion customer value.

Considerable part of his career was spent on long term development of organisations with focus on identifying a strategic position that provided sustainable competitive advantage. Focussed on optimising both revenues and costs and driving efficiencies through digitalisation, matrix and project-based teams and extensive consultations and business analysis.

He has been the Chair and Director on various boards, offering alternative viewpoints and promoting change and good governance. Karam has delivered keynote addresses at various aviation conferences and is a strong believer in sharing knowledge and insights with the upcoming leaders and passion for development of people across all levels of organisation including achieving diversity and gender balance.

Leadership Highlights

Lead the transformation of Royal Brunei Airlines to get singular focus on guest experience. Became a four/five-star airline (same as Qantas/Emirates) and substantially lifted the airline's global positioning by becoming a Top 70 airline in the World.

Head of Network and Revenue Management at Virgin Blue overseeing the network development, fleet planning, revenue optimisation and seeing the growth from two aircraft and two routes to over forty aircraft. This growth was achieved whilst VB delievered some of best profit margins in the world in the airline industry.

Undertook extensive work in fleet planning that cumulated in purchase of new aircraft and negotiated extensively with aircraft and engine manufacturers and other suppliers for attractive pricing and other terms, something not often achieved at smaller airlines.

Played a key role in establishing a joint venture airline with a foreign government, which transformed the airline performance and had a substantial impact on the national economy.

BSc (Physics major), Master of Science (Air Transport Management), Executive Program in Strategy from Stanford, Executive Mentor and airline management trainer

Airlines, airports, tourism, re-branding

Strategy, Tranformation, Strategic negotiations, Fleet planning, risk management. General Management, Board Chair and Directorship

Strategic transformations, High and rapid growth, Start-ups, Leadership Transitions, Crisis management

Favourite quotes
My job is to take these great people we have and to push them and make them even better” Steve Jobs
Being an example is not a way of influencing people, it is the only way” Albert Einstein

“I joined Leaders on Demand...

... because Australian CEO's need Leaders on demand and to suit the circumstances they find themselves in. I will bring my experience and expertise to the organisation to ensure that change is well conceived and fully executed. Getting things right the first time and doing the right things is a substantial challenge in many businesses”

“When I'm not at work...

...  I am working on programs behind the scenes to see how I could contribute to smaller organisations through mentoring programs and help create a solid aviation Master's degree at an Australian University that could produce high quality leaders for airlines, airports and other parts of the aviation sector in Australasia, Pacific Islands and South East Asia”