Flight options chief leaves

 - February 6, 2007, 3:38 AM

Flight Options insists that it’s business as usual despite last month’s unexpected departure of the company’s chairman and CEO, John Nahill. In a written statement, Flight Options said Nahill, who held the top job at the Cleveland-based fractional provider since February last year, left “to pursue other interests.” A Flight Options spokeswoman told AIN that the former chief left of his own accord and was not terminated by the company.

The company’s COO, Michael Scheeringa, has added the title of acting CEO while the Flight Options board conducts an “extensive” search for Nahill’s permanent replacement. Scheeringa joined the fractional provider in February from US Airways, where he was vice president of the Express regional airline division. While at the airline, he held a series of management positions and oversaw the MetroJet and US Airways Shuttle divisions.

Flight Options chief marketing officer Cameron Gowans told AIN that the board is looking for a candidate who has experience in both the general aviation and fractional fields. He added that the build-up of the senior management team over the past year smoothes out the turbulence Nahill’s sudden departure caused. “We’re continuing on the path that’s already been set–there is no change in the company’s overall strategy,” he said. “It’s also important to note that transitions are not unheard of in companies of [Flight Options’] size.” Gowans dismissed speculation that the chief’s departure may be related to a possible sale of Flight Options. (Since the middle of last year Raytheon, which in 2001 sold its Travel Air fractional arm to Flight Options, has held a majority stake in the company.) Nahill was not available for comment.