30-year airline industry veteran joins international aviation consulting firm after helping build the world’s third largest cargo airline
GCW Consulting announced that former Atlas Air Chief Executive Officer Rick Shuyler has joined the firm as Senior Consultant. Shuyler will assist the firm in a number of airline industry projects for the firm’s clients in the United States, Europe and Greater China.
A 30-year airline industry veteran, Shuyler served as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of US-based international air cargo operator Atlas Air, Inc. - now one of the world’s largest cargo airlines. One of the airline’s co-founding principals and a board member from 1995 until 2003, Shuyler became CEO of Atlas Air in 2001. In this position, he presided over the airline’s acquisition of rival Polar Air Cargo and the company’s growth into a $1.5 billion entity operating a fleet of more than 40 Boeing 747 freighters under wet-lease arrangements with some of the best-known airlines around the world.
Most recently, he was involved in the restructuring of United Airlines as part of the Saybrook Capital team advising the Creditors’ Committee.
‘The addition of Rick Shuyler to GCW Consulting brings our firm an additional 30 years of insight into the world airline industry on both the cargo and passenger sides of the industry,’ said GCW Co-Founder, President and CEO Mo Garfinkle. ‘In particular, Shuyler’s expertise in airline financing and his overall financial deftness—demonstrated through successful transactions during some of the most tumultuous periods of the airline industry during the past three decades—are particularly valuable to our airline and financial clients.’
In previous top financial executive positions with Atlas Air, Shuyler was involved in numerous successful financial transactions, including the airline’s Initial Public Offering in 1995. In 1998 the cargo operator achieved the status as the world’s most profitable airline and enjoyed two years as the industry’s most financially fit carrier.
Prior to his participation in the start-up of Atlas Air, Shuyler was Senior Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer for Trans World Airlines (TWA). He previously had spent six years as the Chief Financial Officer for Houston-based Continental Airlines and its parent companies until 1992. Between 1985 and 1992, Shuyler also was president of the affiliated Texas Air Leasing Corp. of former Continental parent company Texas Air Corporation, a leasing division that he created and built to $80 million in assets.
Also within the Texas Air family, from 1982 to 1985, Shuyler held the CFO position at subsidiary New York Air—one of the early post-deregulation start-up airlines that later merged with Continental. The position came after successively senior finance positions with the forerunner to the parent company, which he joined in 1975.
Shuyler earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the American Silliman University in the Philippines. He also did graduate studies at the University of Houston.