Sir Maurice Flanagan retires from Emirates

Dubai legendary airline's vice chairman has been with company for 28 years

Legendary Emirates vice chairman Sir Maurice Flanagan has retired from the company he helped found 28 years ago.

He was a key architect in the phenomenal growth of Emirates airline and Group, having overseen dnata's operations and subsequently every stage in Emirates' remarkable rise from regional carrier with two aircraft to global giant with a fleet of more than 170 aircraft.

Sir Maurice first arrived in Dubai in 1978 when he was appointed Director and General Manager of dnata. Six years later he led the 10-man team which hatched the  plan to launch an airline in five months on a budget of just $10m, with no protection against competition in Emirates' home market, and no subsidy of any kind.

He was the managing director for the inaugural Emirates flight in 1985 and his pivotal role in the company’s development was recognised in 1990 when he was appointed Group Managing Director of Emirates Group. He  became Vice Chairman and Group President in July 2003 and was promoted to his current role in 2006.

He started his career in 1953 with BOAC, the forerunner of British Airways, as a graduate trainee after serving in the Royal Air Force as a navigation officer. He ascended through a variety of overseas posts and returned to the UK in 1965 as a route planning manager.

Join the Discussion

Disclaimer:The view expressed here by our readers are not necessarily shared by Arabian Business, its employees, sponsors or its advertisers.

NOTE: Comments posted on may be printed in the magazine Arabian Business

Please post responsibly. Commenter Rules

Posted by: mazhar fakher

Can we please all stop the Pakistan bashing and focus on the celebration of a remarkable and talented who created the most successful airline in aviation history.

Posted by: Seethekey

Totally agree Mazhar Sahib. Pakistan Airlines was a great airline at that time and Emirates made the most of it and left many other airlines behind. The credit goes to visionaries like Sir Maurice and Shaikh Mohammad. What a wonderful career and what a wonderful contribution to the airline industry

Posted by: Aadil

Now that he is retired, will they force him to leave the country?

Posted by: Mohamed

why will they force him t leave the country ??

Posted by: debbie

a truly successful expatriate. well done!

Posted by: Richard Prince

Massive congratulations to Sir Maurice on his retirement. What a contribution he has made to the success of Dubai and to Emirates.

I hope that he has a long and equally successful retirement as he deserves it.

Posted by: skyobserver

Happy Retirement Sir Maurice! As a guiding light of aviation in the Gulf since the early '60s (as a director of BOAC Associated Companies) he used to coordinate with Alan Bodger (Chairman of Gulf Aviation), before moving to DNATA in Dubai in 1978. The rest is history ... ! A remarkable career!
This article reflects his longevity in the aviation industry .....

All comments are subject to approval before appearing

Further reading

Features & Analysis
Sailing home: Barr Al Jissah creating luxury living in Oman

Sailing home: Barr Al Jissah creating luxury living in Oman

On a stunning tip of Oman’s almost-secluded coastline, local...

Arabian Travel Market: Diversification drives tourism investment

Arabian Travel Market: Diversification drives tourism investment

ATM in Dubai will show the changing face of the industry as entertainment...

Checking in to Africa's hospitality revolution

Checking in to Africa's hospitality revolution

With the African population soaring by 30 million people a year...

Most Discussed