Oliver Wyman expands Aviation practice in the Netherlands

31 July 2019 Consultancy.eu 5 min. read
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Oliver Wyman has bolstered its aviation practice in the Netherlands. Industry expert Evert Meyer has been hired to lead the local ambitions. 

The global strategy and management consulting firm first launched its operations in the Netherlands in 2013, when it established its office in Amsterdam. Since its early focus on financial services, Oliver Wyman has expanded to a Dutch team of around 45 consultants serving clients across four verticals: financial services, retail & consumer goods, energy, and aviation.

With Evert Meyer on board, the consultancy has now strengthened its aviation industry pillar in the country. Globally, Oliver Wyman is one of the leading consultancies in the aviation space, a reputation it owes to its deep capabilities in the industry. Together with supporting clients in strategy and operations, Oliver Wyman also has a technical aviation consulting division (operating under the Cavok brand) and an advanced analytics offering which builds on the firm’s Simulation Center in the US, Oliver Wyman Labs and PlaneStats, a large proprietary database of aviation data.

Oliver Wyman works for some of the globe’s top airlines, cargo carriers, airports, MROs and other service providers in the aviation sector. “We advise clients on the entire airline value chain from strategy setting, network and fleet planning, pricing and revenue management and loyalty, to operations and maintenance, crew and airport management, safety and service and transaction support,” states the firm on its website.Evert Meyer en Coen De Vuijst - Oliver WymanMeyer brings two decades of experience to his new role, which sees him relocate from Australia to Western Europe. Most recently, he was Head of Network and Strategy at Qantas, the flag carrier of Australia and the third oldest airline in the world, after among others Dutch national carrier KLM (part of the French Air France group). In the role, Meyer was responsible for Qantas’ strategic alliances and network, as well as planning for its 130-strong fleet size. Earlier, he led the internal consulting team of Qantas.

Previously, Meyer spent nearly four years with Booz & Company (now Strategy&) in North America, serving in the firm’s Airline and Airport practice. He also worked for around a decade for US management consultancy LeighFisher. Speaking of his new challenge, Meyer said, “Oliver Wyman's in-depth expertise in the aviation industry, specialised skill-set and open culture attracted me. I look forward to expanding the aviation practice in the Netherlands.” 

Flying through change

His appointment comes at a time when the Dutch aviation industry is facing major change. National carrier KLM continues to face cost pressures from low-cost airlines, and curbed by political and environmental demands, Schiphol is struggling with maintaining its leading position in Europe. The airport already lost its number two position in Europe to Charles de Gaulle in Paris, and is, given current policy, close to being overtaken by Frankfurt Airport. Meanwhile, in sync with broader trends, KLM, Transavia and smaller airline operators such as Corendon and TUI face a growing shout from customers to further advance their customer experience and operations.

There are too are major bottlenecks at play in the Netherlands’ aviation space. National carrier KLM is struggling to turn its marriage with France’s Air France into a success, raising concerns of autonomy. Despite the fact that KLM has been performing better than the French for years now, contributing relatively more to profit, the Dutch are seeing the company’s top governance – and hence key decision-making mandates – gradually slip out of their hands. At the same time, growing pro-environmental sentiment is putting pressure on the expansion plans of both KLM and Schiphol. 

“Evert’s rich experience in the aviation industry fits well with our growth ambitions. We look forward to working with him and shaping the aviation practice in the Netherlands.”
– Coen de Vuijst, managing partner of Amsterdam office

Lelystad Airport is another such example. The airport was upgraded and fully prepared for take-off in April last year, but for a number of political reasons its opening has been delayed by at least two years. Next steps are still being heavily debated by politicians, local municipalities, shareholders and airlines, with alignment between all parties still a long way off. 

Leveraging Meyer’s experience, Oliver Wyman will seek to grow its presence in the market. Commenting on the appointment, Coen de Vuijst, Oliver Wyman’s managing partner of the Amsterdam office, said that he believes Meyer is the right man to fill the role. “His rich experience in the aviation industry fits well with our growth ambitions. We look forward to working with him and shaping the aviation practice in the Netherlands.” 

De Vuijst added that he is confident that Meyer will be a good fit with Oliver Wyman’s culture – De Vuijst previously worked sixteen years at Booz & Company, where the pair have crossed paths.