President & CEO, Air Canada Leisure Group
Michael Friisdahl was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada’s newly formed Leisure Group in October 2012. The Leisure Group combines the activities of its tour operator business, Air Canada Vacations, with its new low-cost leisure airline to launch in 2013. Michael has the overall responsibility for this new Leisure Group which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Air Canada.
Prior to joining Air Canada, Michael held the position of Chief Executive Officer of Thomas Cook North America and was a member of the Group Executive Board at Thomas Cook Group plc. He was also a member of the International Purchasing Board and the Aviation Board. Prior to Michael’s appointment as CEO of Thomas Cook North America, he held the position of President and Chief Operating Officer of Thomas Cook Canada. Under his leadership, Thomas Cook became a leading leisure travel group in Canada with significant growth in revenues.
Michael has more than 25 years of experience in the international leisure travel business and a background in international travel, finance, marketing and sales management, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, and business integration.