Air France and KLM’s new Commercial Director, Mr. Matthieu Tetaud, has recently moved to Singapore. He shares with ScandAsia the airline’s vision and talks about its expansion in Scandinavia.
AIR FRANCE and KLM, the French-Dutch airline group, on 1 August 2013 welcomed Mr. Matthieu Tetaud as its new Commercial Director for Air France and KLM Singapore, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand.
“We cannot only be good – we have to be among the best,” says Matthieu when asked about his new role. “That’s the vision that our CEO is pushing, which I aim to bring it to the team here especially for the corporate segment. My experience at the headquarters will help make it happen here.”
Originally from France, Matthieu joined Air France in New York in 2003 as Business Analyst where he worked with all the departments to develop new IT applications for the airlines in the US, Mexico and Canada. In 2005, he moved back to France to manage a project for the sales and service centre there. Matthieu enjoyed his first experience in managing a team to deliver customer service. And later on, his responsibility extended to include managing Air France and KLM’s sales and service centres worldwide.
In 2009, Matthieu felt the need to be even closer to customers so he decided to work as Global Account Manager, where he managed a portfolio of Top Global Corporate Accounts for Air France and KLM and also Delta Airlines and Alitalia. The job gave him strong sales & marketing experience as well as allowing him to work on partnerships with other airlines. With his extensive experience, in 2012 he joined the Asia Pacific management team of Air France and KLM where he was responsible for the performances of Japan, Korea, and South Pacific routes.
“Air France and KLM offers a unique travel experience, while respecting the cultures, the environment and the people of the country where we have the chance to land our aircrafts,” Matthieu says.
Expanding the network in Scandinavia
In April this year, KLM expanded its footprint in Scandinavia by adding Alesund in Norway to its network, serving a total of seven KLM destinations in Norway. Currently, the airline’s network covers seven destinations in Sweden, nine destinations in Finland and three destinations in Denmark.
“Travelling to the destinations in Scandinavia through the award-winning Amsterdam Schiphol airport is easy. Our major strengths are a strong network and two efficient hubs; one in Paris and one in Amsterdam,” says Matthieu.
With its sleek design and friendly efficient service, Amsterdam Schiphol Airport is regularly voted the best airport in Europe. It is a major transport hub with a variety of shops, services and entertainments. The famous airport annex of the Rijksmuseum houses art from the Dutch Golden Age, including paintings by some of the most famous Dutch Masters. Also, the airport is only 15km from central Amsterdam, which is accessible by train in less than 20 minutes.
“The addition of Alesund to the network further strengthens KLM’s position in Norway,” says Matthieu.
Moving to Singapore
To take up the new position, Matthieu moved to Singapore with his Spanish wife and two young daughters in the middle of July 2013.
“The team and people here are very welcoming. I plan to get to know them more, and then meet as many customers as possible to better understand their needs. I also try to eat local food, participate in local activities and attend business platforms to understand the people and the business dynamics here,” says Matthieu.
Based on the east coast of Singapore, Matthieu says that his location is close to East Coast Park and the sea, which is convenient for the family to enjoy outdoor activities. The Tetaud family seems to be well-adapted and enjoys living in Singapore.
“The weather here reminds me of summer holidays in Europe. My wife plans to enjoy many social activities here, and my daughters just love the swimming pools,” says Matthieu.
Matthieu also plans to explore other destinations in the region. One of the destinations he is keen to travel to is Bali. “It’s a bonus that we have a daily flight between Singapore and Bali. I’m a surfer so that’s like the holy grail for me,” he says.