Air France-KLM's board has appointed Jean-Marc Janaillac as the airline group's new chief executive, following the resignation of Alexandre de Juniac.
63 year old Janaillac is currently CEO of multi-modal transport company Transdev.
"The Board has decided that Mr. Janaillac will be co-opted as a group director when Mr de Juniac leaves office on July 31st at the latest. He will then be appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Air France KLM," the company said in a statement.
The nomination had been expected for Tuesday but the board met two days earlier than planned after news of the appointment leaked to news media.
Janaillac sat on Air France's board in the late 1980s and first occupied a senior executive position in the airline industry when he was associate director general at now defunct airline AOM in the late 1990s.
He is a graduate of France's elite administration school, ENA, and of the HEC business school.
Frederic Gagey will stay on as chief executive of Air France-KLM's French network, Air France, a company spokeswoman said.
De Juniac announced his surprise departure to lead IATA last month, saying he had achieved his goals of ending losses and reducing debt, despite having three years left of his mandate.
De Juniac was credited with restructuring Air France-KLM without, for the most part, triggering major conflict with the company's powerful unions. But in 2014 plans to open bases for subsidiary airline Transavia outside France sparked a 15-day pilot strike.