Ed Sims

Don’t miss Ed Sims' powerful CEO story of shattering cultural barriers, helping thousands of employees, and inspiring an entire country.

He discovered his airline's ultimate competitive advantage that ensured it survived the Pandemic and became a thriving organization.

Ed worked and was mentored by Sir Richard Branson. He rose from airport check in agent to CEO of two major airlines.

He was CEO of Airways New Zealand and Canada’s top low fare airline, WestJet, which he led…

…through the largest private equity deal in aviation history.

….through COVID-19… the worst crisis in aviation history.

Now he serves on the board of KiwiRail and is Board Advisor for Virgin Australia.

Ed's LinkedIn profile

KiwiRail's website


  • His favorite lesson from working for Sir Richard Branson.
  • The blockbuster deal he negotiated on a “Shoestring Budget”.
  • His innovation that makes a 17-hour flight enjoyable.
  • What your authenticity reveals about your competitive advantage.
  • Why he was invited to a sweat lodge and presented with a feathered headdress .
  • A lesson leading the largest private equity deal in aviation history.
  • Why as CEO he often served as a flight attendant (not as a passenger).
  • The strategy he used to save the airline during the pandemic.
  • Losing an aircraft - Insight for leading in a crisis.


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