Leadership Team

Datuk Kamarudin Bin Meranun
Group CEO

Datuk Kamarudin Bin Meranun, Malaysian, aged 54, was appointed Non-Independent Non-Executive Director of the Company on 6 June 2006. He was appointed as the Chairman of the Board on 3 February 2010 till 3 March 2011. Datuk Kamarudin was re-designated as Non-Independent Executive Director and Group Chief Executive Officer ("GCEO") on 30 January 2015. He is one of the Company's co-founders, serves as Chairman of the Employees' Share Option Scheme Committee, and is a member of the Safety Review Board of the Company.

Prior to joining the Company, Datuk Kamarudin worked in Arab-Malaysian Merchant Bank from 1988 to 1993 as a Portfolio Manager. In 1994, he was appointed Executive Director of Innosabah Capital Management Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Innosabah Securities Sdn Bhd. He subsequently acquired the shares of the joint venture partner of Innosabah Capital Management Sdn Bhd, which was later renamed Intrinsic Capital Management Sdn Bhd. Datuk Kamarudin received a Diploma in Actuarial Science from University Technology MARA (UiTM) and was named the Best Actuarial Student by the Life Insurance Institute of Malaysia in 1983. He received a BSc with Distinction (Magna Cum Laude) majoring in Finance in 1986, and an MBA from Central Michigan University in 1987.

Datuk Kamarudin was awarded the Darjah Panglima Jasa Negara (PJN), which carries the title Datuk, from the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on 21 November 2013.

He is a Non-Independent Executive Chairman of AirAsia Berhad and a NonIndependent Non-Executive Director of Tune Protect Group Berhad (formerly known as Tune Ins Holdings Berhad). He is also a Director of Yayasan Pendidikan Titiwangsa.

Benyamin Ismail
Chief Executive Officer

Benyamin Ismail, Malaysian, aged 39, was appointed as Chief Executive Officer on 1 September 2015. He joined AirAsia Berhad in March 2010 as the Head of Investor Relations, bringing with him eight years of experience in Investment Banking focusing on Debt Capital Markets. The Investor Relations (IR) function had been set up by AirAsia CEO Aireen Omar, who recruited Ben to spearhead the new unit. His role as the head of Investor Relations required wide knowledge and understanding of the company, and made him answerable to the Group CEO, Group Deputy CEO, CEO and CFO. On top of his main role at IR, Ben also assisted the Corporate Finance and Fuel Procurement unit. He played a critical role in AirAsia’s growth into one of the most attractive companies on Bursa Malaysia in terms of transparency, investor returns and corporate governance. Engaging with domestic and international broking houses, he created greater visibility of AirAsia which at one point was one of the most covered stocks, on the radar of no less than 30 brokerages. AirAsia was duly awarded Best Investor Relations Company and Best CEO four years in a row by Corporate Governance Asia, with Benyamin named the Best Investor Relations Officer four consecutive times. He also received the Best IR Professional award in 2011 and 2012 by Bursa’s Malaysian Investor Relations Association (MIRA). Before joining AirAsia, Benyamin worked for three years in CIMB Investment Bank in Kuala Lumpur focusing on Debt Capital Markets. Prior to CIMB, he was with Maybank Investment Bank and Affin Investment Bank handling their Debt Capital Market portfolios. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Banking & Finance) from Curtin University of Technology, Australia and a Master’s in Electronic Commerce from Edith Cowan University, Australia. He represented Western Australia in the Rowing Nationals in his first two years at university and is currently active in football, basketball and muay thai. He does not hold any directorship in Malaysian public companies, has no family relationship with any director and/ or substantial shareholder of the Company and has no conflict of interest with the Company. He has not been convicted for offences within the past 10 years other than traffic offences, if any. Currently, he has no shareholdings in the Company.

Cheok Huei Shian
Chief Financial Officer

Cheok Huei Shian joined AirAsia X Berhad as Chief Financial Officer on 26 February 2015, bringing with her over 15 years of experience in finance and operations management. She was a part of the core team in the early days of AirAsia and over the years has played an instrumental role in the success of AirAsia, including the Company’s listing on Bursa Malaysia. She has also been a key member of the turnaround team that oversees the entire AirAsia Group. Since joining AirAsia in 2004, she has held senior leadership roles across the Group. From 2011-2014, she served as the Chief Financial Officer of PT Indonesia AirAsia, where she played a key role in streamlining the finance function with AirAsia Berhad, creating synergies between finance, operations and marketing to support strategic business objectives and drive profitable growth. Prior to joining AirAsia, she was with Ernst & Young in the Financial and Advisory Service Department. She is a fellow member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and a member of the Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA).

Moses Devanayagam
Senior Director
Moses Devanayagam

Moses joined AirAsia X in July 2007 as Director of Operations and is currently our Senior Director. He was instrumental in setting up the Operations function, which includes Flight Operations, Engineering, Group Operations, In-Flight Operations and the Safety and Security functions. He also spearheaded the move to KLIA 2, a milestone for AirAsia X and AirAsia Group, in 2014. Currently, Moses leads the coordination of operational functions with the AirAsia Group, Airport authorities and Government agencies including the Malaysian Aviation Commission. He has 44 years of experience in the aviation industry, having worked at Malaysia-Singapore airlines from 1971-1972 as an apprentice and subsequently Malaysian Airline System Berhad from 1972-2007, where he held various key positions, including General Manager-Operations, Head of Contracts Management and Warranty and Contracts Manager. He has been an Associate Member of the Royal Aeronautical Institute United Kingdom (by award) since 1975. He completed a cadet/apprentice technical services in-house training programme with Malaysia-Singapore Airlines in 1972, and type-rating courses at Qantas and Air New Zealand in 1971.

Captain Suresh Bangah
Flight Operations Director

Captain Suresh joined AirAsia X in October 2010 as Chief Pilot, Operations. In October 2013, he was promoted to Flight Operations Director responsible for coordinating, supervising and monitoring the functions and performance of management personnel, pilots, cabin crew and all departments within Flight Operations. He is also responsible for the management of safety and security of all flights operated by AirAsia X. He acts as the liaison person with local and international regulators in ensuring operations are in line with the conditions and restrictions of the Air Operator Certificate. He also represents the company's interest in national and international bodies and institutions as far as flight operations are concerned. Captain Suresh began his career with the AirAsia Group in March 2003. Prior to AirAsia X, he was an internal auditor within Flight Operations at AirAsia Berhad in 2005. In December 2009, he was made a Cadet Pilot Coordinator to manage the Cadet Pilot Training Programme. Soon after, he assumed the position of Flight Deck Recruitment Manager responsible for hiring pilots of different entry levels, and promoting pilots internally.

Arik De
Head of Commercial

Arik joined AirAsia X in January 2016 as Head of Commercial. He is tasked with leading the commercial functions of the airline including our Network, Revenue, Marketing, Ancillary, and Sales & Distribution. Arik started his career at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as a young economist. He subsequently acquired over 16 years of experience in Aviation through work at WestJet in Canada, and being part of two of the largest aviation consulting firms - SH&E/ICF Aviation and InterVistas. At WestJet, he led the network and fleet planning team to grow a primarily domestic airline into the largest non-US airline in the Caribbean, Hawaii and prime US leisure points of Las Vegas and Florida. He was also instrumental in evaluating the first code share partnerships, and being part of the core team that studied and introduced WestJet Encore, the regional arm of WestJet. In his consulting career, he was engaged in over 100 consulting projects in commercial aviation including that at LAN, Aero Mexico, Singapore Airlines, Jeju, SpiceJet, Air India, Gulf Air and Kuwait Airways. Most recently, he was designated the Chief Commercial Officer at TACV, the national airline of Cabo Verde. Arik, an avid traveller, holds a Master’s in Finance and Public Policy from the University of Chicago.

Abdullah Bin Hashim
Head of Internal Audit and Risk Management

Abdullah was appointed Head of Internal Audit and Risk Management at AirAsia X in September 2014. He was formerly the Chief Internal Auditor of Petra Energy Berhad and immediately before that, served a short stint as Chief Internal Auditor of Syarikat Prasarana Negara Berhad. He has over 10 years of internal audit experience covering a range of industries such as oil and gas, telecommunications, transportation, manufacturing and facilities management, stemming from the start of his career within the UEM Group. He obtained a Bachelor’s in Accounting with Honours from the University of Malaya in 1995 and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from London South Bank University, London in 2007. Abdullah is a Chartered Accountant (Malaysia) registered with the Malaysian Institute of Accountants (MIA), a Certified Internal Control Auditor certified by the Institute of Internal Control (IIC), and an Associate Member of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) Malaysia.

Sharmizan Abdul Ghani
Head of Engineering

Sharmizan joined AirAsia X as Head of Engineering in 2015, but is no stranger to the AirAsia Group having previously held the post of Duty Engineer in AirAsia Berhad from 2001-2007. His career in the aviation industry began in 1995 as a Trainee Aircraft Maintenance Engineer with Malaysia Airlines. By mid-1999, he became a Licensed Aircraft Engineer with a Boeing 737-400 rating and later obtained a Boeing 777-200 rating. After his tenure at AirAsia Berhad, he left to join Jet Premier One as an Avionics Duty Engineer in 2007 and was thereafter promoted to Technical Services Manager in 2009.

Yeoh Sai Yew
Head of People

Yeoh has been with the AirAsia Group since 2010. As Head of People, he oversees all human resources deliveries. Yeoh brings with him 16 years of experience gained from different disciplines in Human Resources (HR) in diverse industries, ranging from telecommunications to IT, banking, hospitality, aviation and retail. During this time, he has managed the implementation of PeopleSoft and SAP HR Management Systems (HRMS) in a previous organisation as well as at AirAsia. Prior to joining AirAsia Group, he was with Genting Resorts Berhad; CSA Sdn Bhd, where he was involved in Business Process Outsourcing; and DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd, where he successfully revamped and simplified the company’s benefits structure. Yeoh believes in enabling management to achieve organisational objectives through helping employees realise their potential. He also nurtures a culture of commitment to organisational success by streamlining individual performance with that of the company. He holds a Master’s of Business Administration from Universiti Utara Malaysia and has spoken at numerous HR conferences across Southeast Asia.

Hanif Idrose
Investor Relations
Nadiah Tan Binti Abdullah

Hanif, joined AirAsia X in July 2016 to spearhead Investor Relations department. He is responsible for various investor engagement initiatives, undertakes research and performs analysis on the economy, aviation industry and financial markets. He also oversees any business development activities within the Company and any ad-hoc projects assigned by Group CEO & CEO.

He has 6 years of Investor Relations experience under his belt. Prior to AirAsia X, he previously held Investor Relations Manager posts at AirAsia Berhad as well as Telekom Malaysia Berhad.

Hanif graduated from MONASH University, Melbourne with Bachelor of Business and Commerce and Master in Applied Finance.