Stelios to oppose re-election of ‘too busy’ chairman

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EasyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou has launched another broadside at outgoing chairman Sir Mike Rake, who is due to stand down from the budget airline’s board this summer.

Sir Mike, who narrowly survived an attempt by the group’s largest shareholder to have him ousted last year, is to stand for re-election at the carrier’s annual meeting later this month, but Sir Stelios said he would oppose the move.

In an open letter, Sir Stelios said that Sir Mike, who is also chairman of BT and deputy chair at Barclays, “is too busy with too many messy legal problems on his hands to do a good job at EasyJet over the next six months”.

The entrepreneur, who along with his family owns just under 37 per cent of the airline, also said he was concerned it would place a large order for more planes, arguing that is current fleet of 217 aircraft was “already too big for the winter”.

EasyJet said: “Our institutional shareholders have strongly supported the board at recent general meetings and we are confident that they will
continue to do so.”