Steve Ridgway is a business executive and keynote speaker, best-known as the CEO of Virgin Atlantic Airways. He helped grow the airline from two 747s to a fleet of 40 long haul aircrafts, flying six million passengers a year and turning over a cool sum of £3 billion. As a leading industry voice, he continues to lead and inspire and innovate, even under the toughest economic circumstances.
Former CEO of Virgin Atlantic Steve Ridgway, helped grow the airline from two 747s to a fleet of 40 long haul aircrafts, flying six million passengers a year and turning over £3 billion.
As a business executive and keynote speaker, Steve is a leading industry voice who continually challenges the Government to evaluate its stance on UK aviation and airports. Since stepping down from his role at Virgin Atlantic in 2012, he continues to lead and inspire and innovate, even under the toughest economic circumstances.
In 1990 Steve Ridgeway joined Virgin Atlantic and was placed at the helm of Virgin Freeway, launching the UK’s first automated frequent flyer programme. He quickly rose to board level and eventually to Managing Director.
In 2001, Steve became CEO of Virgin Atlantic where he spent two years turning the company around. He has fought hard to ensure that Virgin Atlantic is the UK's second largest long-haul carrier, and an internationally admired brand. Following this, he spent many years growing the business to an unprecedented degree, and created an innovative and award-winning brand.
He successfully steered the airline through major global aviation issues including the tragic events of 9/11 and the volcanic ash cloud.
The experience he had leading one of the globe’s most prestigious businesses has meant he is an adept speaker on topics of leadership and employee engagement, risk and crisis management and sales and customer service. Steve is also able to able to share his insights on marketing and branding, alongside lessons in corporate social responsibility and corporate turnaround in his keynote speeches.