CALGARY — WestJet has appointed Karl Schuster as its new Executive Vice-President and Chief Loyalty Officer (CLO).
Bringing with him over 19 years of loyalty experience, Schuster will join the executive leadership team in early 2022 following the completion of the immigration process. As CLO, a newly created role for WestJet, he will be responsible for the execution of growing WestJet’s loyalty program, products, services and partnerships.
Schuster previously spent six years as CEO of Velocity Frequent Flyer, Virgin Australia’s award-winning loyalty program, during which he helped significantly increase annual revenue and membership subscribers to 10 million (up from 5.3 million), as well as grow partnerships with brands across the country. Prior to Velocity, he led multi-year loyalty programs for Qantas, British Airways and Malaysian Airlines, and provided consulting advice to a diverse range of airlines in his nearly 15 years at Aimia Inc.
The news comes just days after Harry Taylor officially assumed the role of WestJet Group’s new interim President and CEO.
“Karl has an impressive history of driving exponential growth for a diverse range of loyalty programs and delivering results through innovation and strategy,” said Taylor. “We are looking forward to welcoming Karl to WestJet. His breadth of experience will elevate WestJet’s loyalty program to new heights.”
On joining the WestJet team, Schuster said: “As WestJet transitions from recovery to expansion, the airline is making significant investments in its already successful loyalty program, and I am thrilled to be joining the team at such a pivotal moment in time.
“As WestJet builds back stronger, there is incredible runway in front of WestJet Rewards and we will be working to bring guests more benefits and privileges trough exciting and innovative loyalty enhancements.”