Jan Smets to take over from Count Etienne Davignon as Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors of SN Airholding


Etienne Davignon to remain a member of the Board of Directors and Christina Foerster to join as a new member

Jan Smets, former Governor of the National Bank of Belgium and member of the SN Airholding Board of Directors since July 2019, has been elected Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors of SN Airholding. Jan Smets herewith takes with immediate effect over from Etienne Davignon who remains a member of the Board of Directors. Former Brussels Airlines CEO, Christina Foerster, will replace Jörg Beissel as Board member. 

Jan Smets

As largely anticipated, in its latest meeting, the Board of Directors of Brussels Airlines’ parent SN Airholding has decided to appoint Jan Smets as its Co-Chairman. Thorsten Dirks, Member of the Lufthansa Group Executive Board & Chief Officer IT, Digital & Innovation, will chair next to Jan Smets and herewith keeps his position as Co-Chairman of the Board.

In parallel, Christina Foerster, Member of the Lufthansa Group Executive Board, Customer & Corporate Responsibility and former CEO of Brussels Airlines, will join the SN Airholding Board of Directors as a new member, herewith replacing Jörg Beissel, Head of Corporate Controlling at Deutsche Lufthansa AG.

After 18 years at the head of the SN Airholding Board, guiding Brussels Airlines through challenging times, Etienne Davignon believes the time is right to hand over his Co-Chairman responsibilities to Jan Smets. He remains, however, an active member of the Board of Directors.

Etienne Davignon, former Co-Chairman of the SN Airholding Board of Directors, said:

“Brussels Airlines is facing turbulent times. With his renowned expertise in economics and in-depth international experience, Jan is the right person to support the Management Board of Brussels Airlines in guiding Belgium’s home carrier through the unprecedented crisis caused by worldwide Coronavirus pandemic. In parallel, I am very happy to welcome Christina Foerster in the Board. As former CEO of Brussels Airlines and member of the Lufthansa Group Executive Board, her extensive knowledge of both entities are definitely of an added value to Brussels Airlines.”

The new Board of Directors of SN Airholding consists now of the following members:

  • Jan Smets, Former Governor of the National Bank of Belgium (Co-Chairman)
  • Thorsten Dirks, Member of the Lufthansa Group Executive Board & Chief Officer IT, Digital & Innovation (Co-Chairman)
  • Minister of State Count Etienne Davignon
  • Heike Birlenbach, Senior Vice President Sales Lufthansa Group Network Airlines & CCO Hub Frankfurt
  • Christina Foerster, Member of the Lufthansa Group Executive Board, Customer & Corporate Responsibility and former CEO of Brussels Airlines

André Orban: M. Sc. Engineering
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