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August 2017
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Russi Batliwala has been CEO at Chapman Freeborn since 2009

Batliwala celebrates 30 years with Chapman Freeborn

This summer, Chapman Freeborn CEO Russi Batliwala celebrates his 30th anniversary with the company. Growing up in an aviation family it was clear from a young age that a regular nine-to-five office job was never on the cards for Batliwala and he was naturally drawn to pursue the activity he loved.

Arriving in Germany at the age of 21 he began his career working for a number of commercial airlines before an intriguing job advertise-ment in a newspaper caught his attention with its headline 'Aviation company needs a pair of hands to help'. The year was 1987, and just a few days after spotting the advert Batliwala had joined Chapman Freeborn, paving the way for a successful career that has spanned three decades and seen him rise from the position of trainee charter broker to the head of a global aviation company.

Over the years Batliwala has been a key driver in the company's growth. He has been involved in setting up a number of key global charter operations including subsidiary businesses in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America. Since his appointment as group CEO in 2009 he has been instrumental in developing a strategy for the company's global expansion.

Batliwala describes himself as someone who is constantly moving, always looking for the next opportunity and developing new ideas: “Diversity and innovation are crucial to the survival of a business, standing still has certainly never been an option.”

Early in his career he learned a very important lesson that he still uses today as a formula for success: if you don't know how to give you cannot take. He says: “Business is give and take and based on a partnership with all employees, business partners and clients. This is key for a long-term successful cooperation.” 20 years in Belgium The company is also celebrating two decades of operations at Ostend airport in Belgium. Country manager Chris Vandenplas says: “It's a wonderful achievement to reach 20 years in Belgium. I am personally very proud of what we have accomplished so far. Our team has a strong relationship with our valued clients and will continue to build upon our long tradition of finding the right charter solution for them.” The anniversary was celebrated in style over a weekend in Ibiza where the team enjoyed some well-deserved rest and sunshine.


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Chapman Freeborn Airchartering