14.01.2021 13:58
Group picture with sign.

Photo: © 8010/Hinterleitner from left to right: DI Wolfgang Malik, CEO of Holding Graz, Jürgen Löschnig, Gerhard Widmann, Wolfgang Grimus/EMBA, Councillor Dr Günther Riegler

Graz Airport: new management

Wolfgang Grimus und Jürgen Löschnig replaced the long-term director Gerhard Widmann on 1 January 2021.

Feldkirchen bei Graz, 05.01.2021: Graz Airport started the new year with a change in management. With Gerhard Widmann having retired on 31 December 2020 and thus ending his active service as CEO of the airport, Wolfgang Grimus and Jürgen Löschnig took over the management of the company as of 1 January 2021.

Gerhard Widmann
had been CEO of Graz Airport since 1 July 1999: "For more than 21 years, I was able to develop the airport in all areas with a competent team, which I am very grateful for. I wish my two successors all the best for the future, which is particularly challenging at the moment. I would like to express my special thanks to all employees at Flughafen Graz Betriebs GmbH and its subsidiaries, as well as to the many business partners who have supported me in my work for Graz Airport over the years!"

In the search for a successor, Wolfgang Grimus/EMBA and Jürgen Löschnig were the obvious choice.

Wolfgang Grimus has many years of international experience and has held various management positions at several airlines, including Austrian Airlines, Lauda Air, airberlin and Qatar Airways. He brings extensive expertise in areas such as fleet and network planning, business development and sales.

Jürgen Löschnig has been Chief Financial Officer of Holding Graz since 2005. He is distinguished by 20 years of management experience in various business areas in strategic, economic, legal and personnel matters. In terms of an affinity for the industry and expertise in airport matters, he has been responsible for the fate of Graz Airport for the past 9 years as controlling managing director together with Gerhard Widmann.

DI Wolfgang Malik, CEO of Holding Graz: "In recent years, Gerhard Widmann, together with the owner, has turned Graz Airport into a showpiece company in the House of Graz and developed it into an important hub for the export-oriented Styrian economy. I would like to thank him for his many years of cooperation and wish G. Widmann all the best. With Wolfgang Grimus, we have succeeded in appointing a manager with an excellent international network. Jürgen Löschnig already has 9 years of experience as managing director of Graz Airport. It is particular important in these difficult times to get the airport climbing again soon with a clear strategy for the future."

Councillor Dr Günter Riegler: "Thanks to the strategy jointly developed by the owner and the management, Graz Airport has become the gateway to the rest of the world for Graz as a business and tourism location, as well as for southern Austria and northern Slovenia. Wolfgang Grimus and Jürgen Löschnig are taking over a well-positioned company in difficult times and we hope that Graz Airport, with its new management, will soon be able to take off again by resuming its proven destinations and good hub connections as well as with contemporary innovative mobility offers."

Wolfgang Grimus/EMBA: "Graz Airport and its strategically favourable location have guaranteed the local economy's mobility and flourishing tourism for many years. These are stable prerequisites for surviving in challenging phases too and, moreover, for opening our eyes to new opportunities. I am very much looking forward to successfully expanding the existing business areas and developing new perspectives together with an experienced team of highly qualified employees. In close coordination with our airline partners, tour operators and travel agencies, we are working hard to gradually re-establish the most comprehensive flight offer possible for the Styrian economy and tourism."

Jürgen Löschnig: "In the nine years that I have already had the privilege of managing Graz Airport as managing director with Gerhard Widmann, I have been able to immerse myself deeply in the subject matter. I would like to express my sincere thanks for this cooperation with one of the best CEOs in the industry and wish him all the best for this new chapter in his life. The airport is currently experiencing difficult times due to corona; however, I am convinced that together, the established airport team, Wolfgang Grimus and I, will fly well through these heavy storm clouds soon start climbing again."

The two future CEOs' most important professional stints:

Wolfgang GrimusJürgen Löschnig
Handelsakademie Amstetten
2011 Executive MBA Donauuniversität Krems 
1990 Finished law degree; completed first degree in business administration                        
Finance Department
Marketing Department
1990 – 1991
Research Assistant at the Institute for Financial Law, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz  
1994 – 2001  LAUDA AIR
Head of Route Development
Director Network Management
1991 – 1994
Contract assistant at the Institute for Financial Law, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz     
Head of Network Planning
Head of Market Research
Head of Network Development Eastern Europe & Austria
Director Commercial Passenger Division Central & Eastern Europe
since 1994 various positions held at Holding Graz; since 2005 head of the finance management division and authorised signatory
2010 – 2011  CONSULTING1997 – 2005  Managing Director of Citycom Graz Telekommunikation GmbH       
2011 – 2017  AIR BERLIN
Vice President Network Management               
2000 – 2011  Managing Director of AEVG – Abfallentsorgungs- und Verwertungs GmbH
2017 – 2020  QATAR AIRWAYS
Vice President Network Management                                                   
since 2012 Managing Director of Flughafen Graz Betriebs GmbH
  since 2014  Managing Director of Grazer Unternehmensfinanzierungs GmbH