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Key Speakers


Mr Thomas Reynaert
Managing Director
Airlines for Europe A4E

Thomas Reynaert is Managing Director of Airlines for Europe (A4E), Europe’s largest EU airline association which was launched in January 2016, founded by Air France KLM, easyJet, International Airlines Group (IAG), Lufthansa Group and Ryanair. Prior to joining A4E, as President of the United Technologies (UTC) International Operations (Europe) he led the government relations activities for Europe on behalf of UTC during 2008–2015.
During this time, he was responsible for providing counsel to the corporation and its business units on EU rulemaking and policy, as well as articulating the company’s point of view and business interests to decision makers in the EU institutions and national governments. He also maintained top-level contacts for the corporation and assisted the leaders of UTC’s European businesses in building relationships with decision makers in the EU. In 2011, with the support of UTC’s global CEO, he established the ‘UTC European Regional Meeting’, an internal European business executive roundtable to share best practices across UTC’s businesses – a practice that was then copied by other regional offices globally.
During Thomas’ leadership UTC’s government relations program was reorganized and truly professionalized through a strict performance model, in line with annual business objectives and based on KPIs endorsed by the global leadership of the company. Prior to joining UTC, Thomas led the government relations and regulatory affairs team for Nortel Networks in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), beginning in 2000.
Before that, he was director of EU public affairs for Lucent Technologies (today: ‘Alcatel-Lucent’). Rue du Luxembourg 3 1000 Brussels - Belgium Tel +32 27 93 09 11 2 Earlier positions include business development manager at the European Private Equity and Venture Capital Association and external relations consultant at the European Commission. Between November 2008 and May 2014 Thomas served as a member of the Supervisory Board of the UTC Company OTIS Management GmbH (Germany).
During 2011-2015 Thomas was Chair of AmCham EU’s Security and Defense Committee. He represented UTC at the European Executive Council (EEC) since 2010. In 2014 he became a member of the Strategy Advisory Board of the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE) and of the European Advisory Committee of the Public Affairs Council (PAC). In September 2015 he was appointed a Member of the Executive Committee of the European Centre for Public Affairs (ECPA).

Ms. Anca Apahidean
Area Manager Eastern Europe at International Air Transport Association (IATA)

Anca Apahidean  has over 25 years' industry experience in Aviation involving Aircraft Construction & Technical Operations, Customer Service & Relationship Management, Sales & Business Development as well as Global industry affairs and Financial distribution systems.  She has worked in various roles mainly within the airline sector. 
Trained as an Aircraft Engineer with advanced studies in Sales and Marketing, Business and Administration, Anca is a charismatic and highly energetic manager with strong commercial and operational approach applying pragmatic decision making and people management skills while ensuring that the customer remain central.
Since November 2010 Anca has held the position of Area Manager Eastern Europe ( Romania, Moldova, Bulgaria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland) managing the operations and all IATA activities in the Eastern European countries. Working closely with governments and airport authorities, ANSP authorities, member airlines (including the local representatives of foreign airlines) and other industry stakeholders, suppliers and service providers in the region Between 2008 and 2010 Anca has been part of the Simplifying the Business team as Program Manager Eastern Europe.
Prior to joining IATA as Country Manager Romania in 2006, Anca worked for 10 years in British Airways in Bucharest office where started her progressive career as Airport Customer Service Agent, Finance Executive, Account Manager Travel Agents, Town Office Supervisor and Commercial Executive.
Anca was a Flight Attendant Instructor and an accredited Romanian Civil Aviation Authority Cabin Safety Inspector, providing crucial ground and in-flight training for flight attendants.

Rafał Milczarski
CEO & President of the Management Board

A manager with extensive international experience in the transport industry. Supervisory Board of the company has decided to entrust him the position of LOT’s CEO effective January 28th.
He graduated in Economics from the University of Cambridge. During his studies, he has been a trainee, among others at UBS Bank in Zurich and JP Morgan in London. After graduation he worked in the maritime and railway logistics department at Foster Yeoman Limited in Great Britain. He co-founded the Baltic Rail, one of the first private railway carriers of goods in Poland. In 2005, together with an industry investor Freightliner Group in the UK, he founded Freightliner PL – a freight rail carrier. As a president and co-owner he led the company from a start-up to the achievement of a few per cent share of the freight market in Poland. He is also the founder and former CEO of Freightliner DE - a German subsidiary Freightliner PL and the Association of Independent Railway.
Privately he is married to Martyna and a father of Marysia, Jaś and Ignacy. He is interested in economics and history.

Jost Lammers
CEO of Budapest Airport

Jost Lammers is the CEO and Member of the Board of Directors of Budapest Airport since 1st December 2007. He worked as Managing Director Commercial at Flughafen Düsseldorf Ground Handling GmbH from 2004, and from 2005 he was appointed as Chairman of the Management Board. Prior to this, between 2001 and 2004 he worked for HOCHTIEF AirPort as Divisional Manager and Director of Düsseldorf Airport and was member of the Supervisory Board of Mönchengladbach Airport too. Between 1998 and 2001 he worked for HOCHTIEF AirPort as Senior Asset Manager at Athens International Airport.
After studying Business Administration and Economics in Bayreuth, San Diego and Witten/Herdecke, Mr. Lammers graduated in Economics at the University of Witten/Herdecke and started his carrier in the automotive industry in 1994 before joining HOCHTIEF in 1996.
Mr. Lammers is married with two sons. His successful Hungarian assignment was recognized by the prestigious ‘Expat CEO of the Year Award’ in 2016 by the Budapest Business Journal and the Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency, whereas BUD has been awarded the Best Airport in Eastern Europe by Skytrax for the fourth consecutive year since 2014. Mr. Lammers is also Member of the Supervisory Board of Hamburg Airport since 2016.

Nick Robb
Head of Development

A dynamic leader and entrepreneur, Nick Robb is founder and CEO of Lightsource Renewable Energy, Europe’s largest solar PV developer, owner and operator. He is well known in the industry for his success in marrying retail financial products to low-risk, predictable investment revenue, generated by utility-scale solar PV plants.
Since the inception of Lightsource, Nick’s drive and vision has seen the company enjoy tremendous success over a short period of time - growing from start-up business to Europe’s number one solar PV portfolio holder in just over five years.
Lightsource has more than 1.7GW of operational assets with a very significant pipeline currently under construction, these achievements are a testament to Nick’s innate ability to identify opportunities and build on them. Prior to his current role, Nick sat at Board and Senior Director level in a number of leading retail financial service companies.

Sylviane Lust
Director General, Airlines International Representation in Europe (AIRE)

Sylviane Lust is the Director General of AIRE (Airlines International Representation in Europe).The Association which is based in Brussels represents 17 airlines of different sizes and business models. Their common goal is to operate in the most cost-effective environment.
AIRE is an active and expert interlocutor of the European Institutions and Agencies as well as of Eurocontrol and addresses on behalf of its members the full range of topics affecting the airline sector. Before joining AIRE in 2003, Sylviane was the President and CEO of Sobelair S.A., the Belgian charter airline serving 75 destinations worldwide.
Prior to this, Sylviane was with Sabena S.A., where she held a number of positions, most notably as Vice President Legal, Aeropolitical and External Affairs. Within this role, she was Sabena’s General Counsel and managed its Aeropolitical and External Affairs department. Sylviane was also a member of the Management Committee of the Sabena Group. Sylviane holds a Masters Degree in Air and Maritime Law and a Law Degree from the Université Libre de Bruxelles.

Chief Editor

Ralph Anker is The Editor of The ANKER Report and Director of ANKER-Aero Ltd. After gaining a degree in Mathematics and a Masters in Management Science and Operations Research (both from the University of Warwick)
Ralph then spent almost 15 years as an academic, researcher and consultant at Cranfield University in the UK. He joined Maersk Air Ltd (a British Airways franchise carrier) in Birmingham as Head of Business Development in 2000 before joining BA’s low-cost subsidiary Go in 2001 as Head of Network Planning.
After easyJet acquired Go in 2002 he stayed on until the end of the year as part of the network planning team. After a period of consultancy (for the likes of dba and SkyEurope), and a brief return to academia, Ralph joined PPS Publications as Founding Editor and Chief Analyst of in 2007. In the summer of 2017 he set up his own business to focus on analysing trends and developments in the European air transport market.

Andreas Mathisen
AAL airport - Head of Route & Business Development

1997-2004 worked for Thomas Cook abroad / Area Manager * Hotel / Partner contracts * Development of the product Thomas Cook was offering.
2004-2008 worked for DELL computer / KAM * Responsible for the large corporate accounts * Developing it platforms for clients and services 2008-2012 worked for CWT / Sales Manager * Responsible for Sales – Nordic/EU * Responsible for development of new products and implementations to clients
2012-2017 worked for DAT / Business Development Manager * Responsible for Route Development * Responsible for corporate accounts * Responsible for WETLEASE with Regional focus and development 2017- working for AAL airport / Head of Route & Business Development * Responsible for airlines/charter/tour operators * Development of the scheduled network/charter business

Gabor Nagy
European Commission

Gabor Nagy works as a policy officer in the field of aviation at the Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport of the European Commission.
His main focus is the developments of the aviation internal market and he is involved in several projects of the implementation of the Aviation Strategy for Europe.
An economist by training, he has gained 10+ years of experience in transport sector both at private companies and in the European public administration. Prior to joining the European Commission, he worked for leading companies in aviation and car manufacturing and spent several years in the domains of economic and market research in Europe and the United States.

Gediminas Almantas
CEO Lithuanian airports

I do hold master degree in law from University of Vilnius, Lithuania and LL.M. of Bern University, Switzerland. My research experience includes industrial PhD project focused on international business negotiation, which is hosted by Copenhagen Business School together with Copenhagen Airports. In 2012 I have worked as a visiting scholar at Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona, US in the area of cross-cultural negotiation and communication. My teaching experience includes number of negotiation workshops and the topic of climate change law and business strategy at CBS.
My legal practice since 2006 has been focused on aviation law in the region of Baltic States, serving major regional carriers and airports. Before joining Vilnius airport (2013) I have worked several years for Copenhagen Airports in the area of CSR and sustainability from the regulatory perspective.
Since 2004 I have served as a board member and chairman of Swiss-Baltic Chamber of Commerce strategically and politically promoting business relations between Switzerland, Lichtenstein and the Baltic States. Also, I am a Board member of ACI Europe since 2014 June and CEO of Lithuanian airports since 2014 July.

Erik Elmsæter
CEO of 2Park

Erik has held several commercial management positions in the aviation sector for both Norwegian and Ryanair. Before that he studied Business School at Luleå University of Technology. He is passionate about entrepreneurship, commercial strategies and growth.
At 2Park he pays the bills, hires (and fires) staff as well as heading commercial and strategic tasks. Most importantly he spearheads key projects like “Pølsetorsdag” (Thursday Hot-Dogs).
Erik is the residential sadist that enjoys unnatural long triathlons and seems to be either on a diet or gaining weight. He can solve a rubik’s cube in under 60 sec, juggle with three knives and owns a cabin up north where reindeers out populate humans by an order of magnitude.

Dr. Gergely G. Balázs
Head of Department at Siemens Hungary

Dr. Gergely G. Balázs: Head of Department at Siemens Hungary, senior lecturer at Budapest University of Technology and Economics. Dr. Balázs received his MSc degree in Electrical Engineering at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics (BME), in 2007; and his Engineering-Economist degree at Corvinus University, Budapest, Hungary, in 2012. He obtained his Ph.D. degree at BME, in 2013. Since 2010, he has been a Lecturer in the Department of Electric Power Engineering at BME, where he presently holds the rank of Senior Lecturer. Since 2014, he has been the Head of the R&D department at Siemens Hungary.
His current research interests include battery management systems and electric dive systems for special applications especially for aviation.
Dr. Balázs manages international Siemens projects and technical leader of government co-funded projects. He was the leader of the R&D activity, which was focusing on the drive system of the eFusion aircraft, which is the first electric, two-seater aircraft, capable for soft-aerobatic maneuvers. He was the leader of the first Hungarian high-power wheel-hub motor project.

Gavin Teale
Managing Director, Eastern Europe, Russia and CIS

Gavin is Managing Director for Eastern Europe. His current role is focused at leading an exceptionally motivated Agency Commerce team to ensure Travelport's customers, partners and prospects across 24 countries in our Eastern Europe region are driven to work with Travelport so together we can jointly achieve our commercial goals.
Gavin was appointed to his current post in December 2015, having previously held a variety of roles in Global Product Management, EMEA Customer Services & Operations and Global Product Marketing. Most recently Gavin has been commercially responsible for Travelport's relationships with all our key Distributor partners and leading OTA customers across Eastern Europe.
Gavin started his career with Galileo UK in October 1994 and has gained experience in global electronic travel distribution. Various roles have provided him with a breadth and depth of knowledge in the travel commerce industry.

Balazs Biro
Country Manager - Hungary

As Country Manager Balazs is responsible for driving business results, developing long term, mutually beneficial relationships with travel agency customers, prospects, partners and leading the Travelport team in Hungary.
Balazs is also responsible for managing Travelport's commercial relationship with the distributor partner in Bulgaria. Prior to joining Travelport, he held roles at a number of international organizations, including American Express Financial Services where he was responsible for managing relationships with travel agencies and financial institutions.
Balazs was born in Hungary and holds an MSc in Business Administration from University of Debrecen and a BSc in Tourism from the Collage Catering and Trade in Budapest.

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