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StarLux Airlines chairman takes over leadership at Taiwan’s Uni Air

Chang Kuo-wei's return to the Evergreen Group follows leadership change

  2013
StarLux Chairman Chang Kuo-wei discussing his appointment as Uni Air chairman with the press Thursday. 

StarLux Chairman Chang Kuo-wei discussing his appointment as Uni Air chairman with the press Thursday.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — StarLux Airlines Chairman Chang Kuo-wei (張國煒) has been appointed chairman of Uni Air following a leadership change at the Evergreen Group, reports said Thursday (April 14).

Uni Air used to function as a domestic and later regional airline next to EVA Air inside the Evergreen Group. Chang chaired EVA until he was ousted in a power struggle following the death of his father, Evergreen Group founder Chang Yung-fa (張榮發), in 2016.

He went on to launch an airline of his own, StarLux, starting services in early 2020 just as COVID-19 began to expand across the world.

Chang Kuo-wei’s appointment by the board of Uni Air on Thursday followed a new round of infighting at the Evergreen Group. The founder’s son-in-law, Cheng Shen-chih (鄭深池), has taken over as chairman of its management arm, Evergreen International Corp., according to reports last week.

Leaving the Uni Air board meeting Thursday morning, Chang Kuo-wei rejected reports that his appointment would bring StarLux added benefits, such as permission to launch domestic flights, CNA reported. Applying for a domestic license would be “a piece of cake” for StarLux in any event, he told reporters.

Asked whether he was planning to return to EVA Air, Chang said that even though he still held 9% of its shares, there was no need for him to lead the airline again. He said he was acting as chairman of Uni Air as a representative of the family at one of his late father’s companies.

Chang did not divulge details of how the new arrangement would affect the development of both StarLux and Uni Air, and what level of cooperation could exist between the two airlines.