In a move that has astonished the airline industry, not to mention EasyJet, Haji-Ioannou is preparing to launch a new airline, Fastjet. There are few further details as yet – simply a single, bright red webpage, Fastjet.com, bearing the message “by Stelios. Coming soon!”.
We don’t yet know what sort of fleet he is planning, whether he has leased any aircraft, which routes Fastjet will fly or whether it will go head to head with EasyJet, in which the billionaire entrepreneur and his family retain a 38 per cent stake.
Haji-Ioannou has been engaged in a long and increasingly bitter battle with EasyJet management on a number of fronts, peace seemed to have broken out between the two sides just last week, when the board bowed to pressure to pay a special dividend to shareholders.