Last updated: February 20. 2013 3:56AM - 120 Views

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(AP) Finnair CEO Mika Vehvilainen has announced he will step down on Feb. 28 to head the international cargo handling company Cargotec.

The Finnish carrier said Monday that during Vehvilainen's three-year tenure he had been a leader of change who helped make the struggling airline viable in the face of the aviation industry's transformation.

Finnair, which has been battling falling demand and fierce competition, made a record third-quarter net profit of 51 million after years of losses. In October, it announced a plan to save 140 million ($180 million) by 2014.

Vehvilainen's predecessor resigned in 2010 in what he called crisis conditions as pilots and personnel staged strikes amid cutbacks and layoffs.

Last year, Finnair PLC and FlyBe formed a joint venture after buying Finnish Commuter Airlines.

Associated Press
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