Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths was named the CAPA Asia Pacific Airport Chief Executive of the Year. A new category established for 2015, this award is given to the airport executive who has demonstrated outstanding strategic thinking and innovative direction for the growth of their business and the industry.
Griffiths accepted the award from CAPA Executive Director Peter Harbison at an event held in Singapore on November 23. Griffiths was selected for successfully managing Dubai through a massive expansion programme and completing an unprecedented runway improvement project.
“In 2014 Mr. Griffiths oversaw one of the largest ever runway improvement projects, which required Dubai to operate with only one runway for three months,” Harbison said. “Despite the runway closures Dubai was able to overtake Heathrow in 2014 as the world’s biggest international airport as passenger throughput increased by 6% to 70.5 million.”
CAPA noted that much of the UAE’s economic success comes from the performance and growth of Dubai International. Griffiths became CEO of Dubai Airports in 2007 and has since overseen the operations along with massive development. He managed the airport’s successful launch of Terminal 3 in 2008 and is now the process of overseeing a USD7.8 billion expansion plan the final piece of which is Concourse D which will open in 2016 providing 32 additional gates, lifting Dubai’s capacity from 75 to 90 million annual passengers. Griffiths also leads the ongoing operation and development of Dubai World Central (DWC), which will eventually be the world’s largest airport with an ultimate capacity to handle up to 240 million passengers and 16 million tonnes of cargo.
Now in its thirteenth year, CAPA’s Aviation Awards for Excellence are intended to reward airlines and airports that are not only successful but have also provided industry leadership in an always changing environment. At a time of industry upheaval, CAPA winners are adopting strategies that offer new directions for others to take up.
Initially limited to Asia Pacific and the Middle East, CAPA expanded the awards in 2012 to include all regions. This year the Aviation Awards for Excellence were presented at two gala dinners, one for the global industry on 7-Oct-2015 and one for Asia Pacific including the Middle East on 23-Nov-2015.
Award candidates were independently researched and short-listed by a team of analysts at CAPA – Centre for Aviation and by partners at Heidrick & Struggles. Winners were then selected by two independent and separate panels of judges, one panel for the global awards and one panel for the Asia Pacific awards. The judges for the 2015 Asia Pacific awards included: Guy Farrow, Peter Harbison, Andrew Herdman, Azran-Osman Rani, Emirsyah Satar and Andy Stephen.