Air New Zealand chief executive officer Rob Fyfe has resigned.
Fyfe, who has been in charge at the national carrier since 2005, this morning confirmed he would be leaving his post at the end of the year.
His decision was made partly to allow the airline's "talented and capable" executives the room to realise their full potential he said.
"After almost a decade at Air New Zealand, I am an Air New Zealander to the core and I live and breathe Air New Zealand every day. At the same time I'm very conscious that I am surrounded by many very talented and capable executives and if they are to grow and realise their full potential I have to create the space to allow them to do so," he says.
Fyfe said he was proud of his role in improving the financial situation of Air New Zealand since inheriting signifcant economic challenges when he took the role.
"While many of the challenges were evident at the outset, many unexpected hurdles also emerged. That is the nature of the aviation industry, and I continue to be proud of how Air New Zealanders rally around to support each other."
Air New Zealand has certainly gone ahead during Rob Fyfe's time as leader, although he hasn't endered himself to everyone. Fyfe has a strong public profile, but his results speak for themselves.
And he has been praised by his Chairman; read on:
Board chairman John Palmer praised Fyfe's contribution to the airline.
He credited him with allowing Air New Zealand to remain profitable while other airlines lost billions of dollars in the global economic crisis.
"Alongside this Air New Zealand's innovations, high customer satisfaction ratings and culture have become the envy of airlines around the world. Rob's leadership skills have also been acknowledged internationally."
That Air New Zealand has twice been voted the international Airline of the Year in the last three years is testament to the quality of its services and its innovation, and is something which Rob Fyfe can draw personal satisfaction from. His shoes will not be easy to fill.