Mr Kilavuka, a Kenyan, has held the post in acting capacity since December 16 following the resignation of the ex-chief Sebastian Mickosz, a Polish national, announced his resignation in the middle of a renationalisation process.
“It is particularly gratifying to me that the Board agreed to support the appointment of Allan to the full role of substantive CEO. During his short time as acting CEO of KQ, Allan has thrown all his energy into this role, whilst still maintaining his position of CEO of Jambojet,” Kenya Airways Chairman Michael Joseph said.
According to him, Kilavuka will join the Boards of all subsidiary companies and will remain on the Board of Jambojet initially as CEO until March 31, 2020, and thereafter as a representative of Kenya Airways.
Mr Kilavuka has led the five-year-old low-cost carrier Jambojet since January 2019.
He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Nairobi and a Postgraduate Certificate in Psychology from the University of Liverpool.
Kilavuka has over 23 years’ experience in leadership having worked across various organization setups including strategy and financial planning. He has previously worked for Deloitte & Touche and General Electric’s (GE) global operations leader for Sub-Saharan Africa.
The incoming CEO will be tasked with turning the loss-making airline back to profitability. The airline has been making losses for at least five years now.
Kilavuka takes over from Mikosz who withdrew from his leadership position last year before the end of his three-year contract which was to expire in June 2020.
Mickosz left a time when the cabinet opted to nationalize the airline to save it from debts it had incurred since 2014 after making costly aircraft purchases.