EasyJet chief Johan Lundgren cuts pay to match predecessor

Posted February 01, 2018

Johan Lundgren says the move is part of his company's commitment to eliminating the gender pay gap in society.

EasyJet, the Luton, England-based carrier, had set Lundgren's starting salary at approximately $1.04 million; a raise of almost $48,000.

The new CEO of European airline easyJet appears to be well-grounded.

EasyJet is committed to equal pay policy and equal opportunity for women and men, he said.

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Lundgren was reportedly given a £740,000 ($AUD 1.29m) salary when he joined the company, while McCall was believed to be earning £706,000 ($AUD 1.23m) when she left her role in November 2017.

Although salaries for airline jobs are collectively bargained by unions and the pay for men and women is equal, the small number of women in high-paying positions like pilot have caused easyJet's gender pay gap to balloon to 51.7 percent.

The UK airline acknowledges that its gender pay gap - the difference in the average amounts earned by men and women across its business - is now 52%. The company noted that in all other respects, his remuneration package was identical to hers. EasyJet has already gone further than other airlines in trying to attract more women into a career as a pilot.

McCall left EasyJet at the end of 2017 to take up the chief executive role at United Kingdom broadcaster ITV.

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Earlier this month, EasyJet announced revenues jumped more than 14 percent in its first quarter, profiting in part from the collapse of rivals and massive flight cancelations at Ryanair, largely owing to a pilots shortage.

"I want us not just to hit our target that 20 per cent of our new pilots should be female by 2020, but to go further than this in the future", Lundgren said.

EasyJet said they recognised "we need to do better". The airline, 94 percent of whose pilots are male, has set a target that 20 percent of its new pilots should be female by the end of the decade.

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