Jet Airways cancels all international flights

Jet Airways cancels all international flights for April 11-12, 2019, domestic flights affected too

Cash-strapped Jet Airways has cancelled all international flights for Thursday, sources in the airline said. The move comes in the midst of the airline grounding more than three-fourth of its 119-aircraft fleet. All international flights of Jet Airways have been cancelled for Thursday, the sources said.

Jet Airways, the cash-strapped domestic airlines, on April 11, 2019, said that it has cancelled all the international flights scheduled for Thursday and Friday, April 12, 2019, citing “operating reasons”. Further, three domestic flights scheduled for tomorrow, April 12, 2019, have also been cancelled. Jet Airways has said that guests have been duly informed with regard to the cancellations and the refunds are being processed. Jet Airways sincerely regrets the inconvenience caused to its guests, Jet Airways spokesperson said.

Jet Airways cancels all international flights for April 11-12, 2019, several domestic flights affected too

The move comes in the midst of the airline grounding more than three-fourth of its 119-aircraft fleet. “Jet Airways’ flight 9W 615 Mumbai to Kolkata and 9W 675 Kolkata to Guwahati of tomorrow April 12, 2019, has been cancelled due to operational reasons,” Jet Airways said, adding, “9W 676 Dehradun to Kolkata via Guwahati has been cancelled on the same date until further notice.” “An additional 10 aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of amounts outstanding to lessors under their respective lease agreements,” ANI said.

“JetAirways cancels all international flights for today & tomorrow,” ET Now said in a tweet. According to an ET Now reporting, Jet Airways has pulled out operations from many domestic airports with effect from today. Flights from Kolkata, Guwahati, Patna have been suspended till further notice. Jet Airways has been operating only 14 aircraft today from the 119 aircraft fleet.

Amid the international operations of Jet Airways, flights to Amsterdam, Paris, London has been cancelled for two days, ET Now reported citing unnamed sources. The flights have been cancelled due to the scarcity of funds by the airline.

NEW DELHI, APRIL 11, 2019

Naresh Goyal, wife deboard Jet; lenders take control

Naresh Goyal, wife deboard Jet; lenders take cockpit control

Giving up chairmanship after more than 26 years, embattled Jet Airways’ founder Naresh Goyal on Monday quit as a board member, with the lenders taking control of the cockpit and deciding to infuse Rs 1,500 crore immediately into the ailing airline.

Struggling to stay afloat amid a debt burden of over Rs 8,000 crore, the board of the country’s first private full service carrier also approved conversion of banks’ debt into equity and induction of nominee directors of the lenders, who would become majority stakeholders.

Image result for Naresh Goyal,

Expressing happiness over the lenders’ decision, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said India needs more airlines, “otherwise airfares would rise”.

“Banks have kept self interest in mind by trying to keep it as a going entity so that they can recover their dues,” he said in Delhi hours after the airline’s board cleared the debt resolution plan.

Bringing an end to weeks of uncertainty over the future of the cash-strapped carrier, the board has approved immediate fund infusion of up to Rs 1,500 crore by lenders as well as conversion of debt into equity.

Naresh Goyal, his wife Anita Goyal and Etihad Airways’ nominee director Kevin Knight have quit the board.

Gulf carrier Etihad, a strategic partner, holds 24 per cent stake in Jet Airways while Naresh Goyal has a shareholding of 51 per cent.

Goyal’s stake would come down to 25 per cent while that of Etihad would reduce to 12 per cent. The consortium of Indian lenders, led by State Bank of India (SBI), would become the majority shareholders of Jet Airways, the airline said in a statement.

The airline said two nominees of the promoter and one nominee of Etihad Airways would continue on the board, which would also see induction of two people nominated by the lenders.

SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar said Naresh Goyal would be eligible to bid for the airline when the lenders auction it next month.

The board approved conversion of “Re 1 of lenders’ debt into equity by the issuance of 11.4 crore equity shares”, in accordance with RBI circular issued on February 12, 2018.

As per that circular, lenders have to start resolution process under the insolvency law if a borrower fails to repay in 180 days after the first default.

Shares of Jet Airways, which has been operating for over 25 years, zoomed 15.5 per cent on Monday after reports of Naresh Goyal’s exit poured in. The official announcement about the revamp came soon after the markets closed.

“The company will also engage with payment intermediaries for release of trapped cash. The airline will leverage the funding to partly clear pending dues towards lessors, vendors, creditors and employees in a phased manner.

“The move will see Jet Airways re-deploy several of its grounded aircraft back into its network, helping renew many of the routes it had temporarily suspended, which will help restore normalcy of operations,” it noted.

Financial crunch has forced the airline to ground more than 80 of its total 119 planes. At least 54 aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of lease rentals.

An Interim Management Committee (IMC) has been constituted to oversee the overall financial and operational performance of the airline. The panel would be  under the overall supervision of the board of directors with the support of McKinsey & Co.

“As part of the resolution plan, the lenders will also begin the process of sale/issue of shares to new investors which is expected to be completed in the June quarter,” the statement said.

Naresh Goyal, who became chairman of the company in April 1992, said no sacrifice is too big for him to safeguard the interest of the airline and the families of its 22,000 employees. In a letter to employees, Goyal said the decision to step down from the board is not the end of the journey but the start of a brand new chapter.

Approval of the debt-recast plan will put the carrier on a “sounder and sustainable” financial footing, he said.

Against the backdrop of salary payments being delayed, the airline said the promoter and all stakeholders “remain fully committed to ensure deferred salaries and dues to external vendors and aircraft lessors are cleared on priority in the foreseeable future”.

SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said, “Today is indeed a sad day for Indian aviation”.

 “By launching a truly world class airline, Naresh and Anita Goyal made India proud. This is also a wake-up call for Indian policy makers. We urgently need to address structural challenges that make India’s airlines uncompetitive to airlines around the world,” Singh said

According to Jet Airways, the board unanimously and unequivocally lauded Goyal’s vision in giving birth to the iconic brand and also averred that he has always been way ahead of the times. The board also appreciated Goyal’s sterling role in IATA, resulting in the innumerable airline codeshare partnerships he built for the airline.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is a grouping of around 290 airlines, including Jet Airways.

“The board also took particular and deeply grateful cognisance of the Chairman’s noble, large-hearted self-sacrifice in graciously stepping down from all that he held dear for the sake of the 22,000 employees of the company,” the statement said.

-PTI | 26 March 2019 | Mumbai/New Delhi

Cash-strapped Jet Airways cuts more domestic flights

Cash-strapped Jet Airways cuts more domestic flights

After pulling out of Abu Dhabi, Manchester and Hong Kong over the past 48 hours, Cash-strapped Jet Airways on Thursday slashed its domestic schedule by cutting departures from Delhi to all metro cities, except Mumbai.

A look at the schedules from Delhi showed that, on Thursday, there were no domestic departures to Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kolkata. The cash-strapped airline has also stopped accepting bookings for the Mumbai-Hong Kong flight beyond March 22. The Delhi-Hong Kong service was cancelled overnight.

The Naresh Goyal-led Jet is facing its worst financial crisis, with debt exceeding $1 billion. The carrier, which is struggling to stay aloft, has delayed payments to banks, suppliers, and aircraft lessors — resulting in some of them moving to terminate lease deals and take back their aircraft.

Critical period: The Naresh Goyal-led Jet Airways is facing its worst financial crisis, with debt exceeding $1 billio

Data available showed that the Manchester-Mumbai route, which was being operated by an Airbus A330-200, is shutting down indefinitely, indicating lessors had grounded the aircraft.

Domestic flights

On Thursday, Jet cancelled 73 of its 117 departures from Mumbai. Similarly, in Delhi it operated only 31 of the 106 published departures.

Of the 31 flights from Delhi, 20 were operated using Boeing 737-800 aircraft. Of these, 7 were to Mumbai, 3 to Amritsar, 2 to Kathmandu, 2 to Dehradun and one each to Pune, Dhaka, Kochi, Srinagar, Singapore and Bangkok. “Flights to Bhopal, Udaipur, Chandigarh, Jaipur, etc. were operated using the ATR 72-500 fleet,” an airline official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

From Bengaluru, Jet operated only 3 flights: one each to Mumbai, Delhi and Amsterdam. “We have cancelled 26 flights out of Bengaluru,” the official said.

At Chennai, 16 departures were cancelled. Of the four flights that operated, 3 were to Mumbai and one to Paris. From Hyderabad, two flights were operated to Mumbai, compared with the 6 departures it normally operates. In Kolkata, 8 out of 10 departures were cancelled, with just one each to Guwahati and Mumbai taking off.

Flights to airports like Mangalore, Kozhikode, Thiruvananthapuram, Bhuj, Coimbatore were not being operated, data showed.

Jet’s services to Amsterdam, Paris and London have not been hit. All flights are available for booking through the entire schedule and are operating normally.

The airline is also operating 3 daily flights on the Mumbai-London Heathrow sector and one daily flight on the Delhi-London Heathrow route. These too are available for bookings. “Jet Airways owns 10 Boeing 777-300ER, so the impact on flights to Europe will be minimum,” another official said, declining to be identified.

Engineers’ union

“Amidst all the commotion, this message is to appreciate each one of you who is continuously complying with all the regulations, civil aviation requirements, manufacturer’s approved manuals, company rules and standard procedures, unfazed by the developments around you,” Amit Kelkar, Vice President, Jet Aircraft Maintenance Engineers’ Welfare Association (JAMEWA), wrote to the airline’s engineers.

“While the JAMEWA committee is in talks with the management on the issue of disbursal of our salaries, let’s all collectively live up to this challenge and continue to maintain our professionalism by delivering safe airplanes for our esteemed guests throughout the network, within India and across the globe, the way we have been always doing,” Mr. Kelkar wrote.

MUMBAI, MARCH 21, 2019

Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft operating in India grounded

All Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft operating in India grounded today: DGCA

All Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft operating in the country would be grounded by 4 p.m. on Wednesday as per the decision taken by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Tuesday night, a senior official of the aviation watchdog told PTI.

The decision comes days after a 737 MAX 8 aircraft of the Ethiopian Airlines crashed near Addis Ababa, killing 157 people, including four Indians. SpiceJet has around 12 such aircraft in its fleet. Jet Airways five, which have been grounded already.

A Jet Airways Boeing 737 on the tarmac at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad. File photo

In a statement on Wednesday, SpiceJet said,” SpiceJet has suspended Boeing 737 Max operations following the DGCA’s decision to ground the aircraft. Safety and security of our passengers, crew and operations are of utmost importance to us and we will be working with the regulator and the manufacturer to attain normalcy in our operations. We are confident of accommodating the vast majority of our passengers and minimise inconvenience.”

The decision comes days after a 737 MAX 8 aircraft of the Ethiopian Airlines crashed near Addis Ababa, killing 157 people, including four Indians. SpiceJet has around 12 such aircraft in its fleet. Jet Airways five, which have been grounded already. In a statement on Wednesday, SpiceJet said,” SpiceJet has suspended Boeing 737 Max operations following the DGCA’s decision to ground the aircraft. Safety and security of our passengers, crew and operations are of utmost importance to us and we will be working with the regulator and the manufacturer to attain normalcy in our operations. We are confident of accommodating the vast majority of our passengers and minimise inconvenience.”

Second such crash

The Ethiopian Airlines incident on Sunday was the second such crash involving a Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft in less than five months. In October last, an aircraft operated by Lion Air crashed, killing over 180 people in Indonesia.

The European Union and many other countries across the world have already banned the use of the 737 Max 8 aircraft in their respective airspace.

-PTI, NEW DELHI , MARCH 13, 2019

Jet Airways tops global airline product rating chart

Jet Airways tops global airline product rating chart, Air India a close second

Indigo, SpiceJet lead among low-cost carriers in Airline Ratings ranking for 2018

The airline safety and product ratings for 2018 by global airline safety and product rating agency Airlineratings.com has Jet Airways topping the ‘product’ category list with a score of 7/7 in the full-service carrier category. Indigo has scored 4 in the low-cost airline category.

In the ratings announced this week, Air India has scored five, while Air Asia India has got a rating of 2 on 5. An airline is rated from 1 to 7 stars on product category, with seven being the highest ranking for full service carriers, while the low-cost ones are rated out of 5.

Related image

Vistara Airlines is the only Indian carrier not rated

While Indigo and SpiceJet have managed a product rating of 4 each out of 5, Air India and GoAir have got 5 on 7 and 3.5 on 5 respectively. Vistara Airlines is the only Indian carrier not rated.

Ranking criteria

The criteria for product ratings include personal in-flight entertainment, cabin space and comfort, beverages, food, seat recline, website information, etc.

In the ‘safety’ category, Air India, Go Air, Indigo, Jet Airways and Jet Konnect have all managed a rating of 6 on 7. Air Asia India and SpiceJet have got 3 on 7 each, while Air India Express, the only Indian carrier without a fatality-free record — due to the 2010 Mangalore air crash — has got a rating of 5.

“The product is core to our business and a competitive differentiator across the industry. The quality of the experience determines whether guests travel with us or another airline. As a result, we are constantly innovating to ensure that we remain the gold standard of product excellence in the aviation industry,” a Jet Airways spokesperson said.

AirlineRatings, launched in June 2013, rates the safety and in-flight product of 405 airlines. It has been used by passengers from 232 countries and has become the industry standard for safety and product rating.

MUMBAI, JANUARY 11, 2019 

Air passenger traffic higher by 20 percent in 2015

Air passenger traffic higher by 20 percent in 2015

Low fuel prices, coupled with competitive fares and recovering economic activity, led India’s domestic air passenger traffic to skyrocket by 20.34 percent in 2015, official data showed on Monday.

The data furnished by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) showed that passenger traffic during the January-December period stood at 811 lakh in 2015 from 674 lakh passengers, who were ferried during 2014.

“Passengers carried by domestic airlines during January-December 2015 were 810.91 lakh
as against 673.83 lakh during the corresponding period of previous year, thereby
registering a growth of 20.34 percent,” the DGCA said in its monthly statistical supplement.

The data showed that low cost carrier (LCC) IndiGo achieved the highest market share in the calendar year under review at 36.7 percent followed by Jet Airways (19.2), Air India (16.4), SpiceJet (11.6), Go Air (8.5) and JetLite (3.3 percent).

Others like AirAsia India had a market penetration of 1.7 percent, while Vistara reported a market share of 1.3 percent, followed by Air Costa’s (0.9). Air Pegasus and Trujet had a market share — (0.1), respectively.

On a monthly-basis, the air passenger traffic rose by 19.71 percent in December to 77.09 lakh from 64.40 lakh registered during the corresponding month of last year.

Furthermore, the DGCA data revealed that LCC SpiceJet had the highest passenger load factor during the month under review at 92.1 percent.

The LCC was followed by another budget carrier IndiGo (88.5), Air Costa (87.1), Air India (86.7), Go Air (86.5), Jet Airways (83.8), JetLite (83), AirAsia India (82.7), Trujet (82.7), Air Pegasus (82.2) and Vistara (77.6).

At the same time, data on the on-time performance showed Vistara leading the industry with 90.6 percent punctuality at four major airports of Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai.

It was followed by Jet Airways and JetLite (78.5), IndiGo (78.3), SpiceJet (72.9) and Air India (62.8 percent).

Meanwhile, Air Pegasus had the highest numbers of cancellations at 19.33 percent followed by Air Costa (14.59), Jet Airways (4.14), Air India (2.39), IndiGo (2.01), Go Air (1.52), Trujet (1.26), JetLite (0.88), AirAsia India (0.49), Vistara (0.43) and SpiceJet (0.34 percent).

“The overall cancellation rate of scheduled domestic airlines for the month of
December 2015 has been 2.49 percent,” the aviation regulator said.

According to the data, a total of 1,091 passenger-related complaints were received during December.

“During December 2015, a total of 1,091 passenger-related complaints had been
received by the scheduled domestic airlines,” the statement disclosed.

“The number of complaints per 10,000 passengers carried for the month of December 2015 has been 1.4”

Air India had the highest complaints rate per 10,000 passengers in the month under review — (4.3).

The national passenger carrier was followed by Go Air (1.5), Jet Airways and JetLite (1.3), Air Costa at (1.1), Air Pegasus (1.00), AirAsia India (0.7), SpcieJet (0.6) IndiGo (0.5), Trujet (0.4) and Vistara (0.1).

-18 January 2016 | IANS | New Delhi

Seat Occupancy Ratio in Flights in India

Seat Occupancy Ratio in Flights in India 

As on date, 14 Scheduled Operators are functioning in the country.

The financial summary of Scheduled Indian carriers for the Financial Year 2013-14 is given below:

FINANCIAL SUMMARY OF SCHEDULED INDIAN CARRIERS FOR THE FINACIAL YEAR 2013-14
(RS. IN MILLION)
2013-14
NAME OF THE AIRLINE OPERATING REVENUE OPERATING EXPENSES OPERATING RESULT
NATIONAL CARRIERS
AIR INDIA 190,934.9 223,488.5 -32553.6
AIR INDIA EXPRESS 20,696.1 19,968.4 727.7
ALLIANCE AIR 2,423.9 4,178.2 -1754.3
TOTAL. 214,054.9 247,635.1 -33580.2
PRIVATE SCHEDULED DOMESTIC AIRLINES
JET AIRWAYS 172,325.1 201,072.5 -28747.5
JETLITE (P) LTD. 16,909.9 21,456.0 -4546,0
GO AIR 25,323.8 24,228.8 1097.0
SPICEJET 63,042.3 73,036.8 -9994.5
INDIGO 111,165.8 108,486,9 2698.9
AIR COSTA* 511.0 1,206.6 -695.5
TOTAL 388,767.0 428,259.0 -39492.0
GRAND TOTAL 602,821.9 675,894.1 -73072.2
” Air Costa started operating In October 2013.
SOURCE :- ICAO ATR FORM-EF FURNISHED BY SCHDEDULED INDIAN CARRIERS.

           The Passenger load Factor of Scheduled Indian carriers for the Financial Year 2013-14 is given below:

PASSENGER LOAD FACTOR OF SCHEDULED INDIAN CARRIERS FOR THE FINANCIAL YEAR 2014-15
NATIONAL SCHEDULED CARRIERS
NAME OF THE CARRIER NATURE OF OPERATION PASSENGER LOAD FACTOR*
(%)
AIR INDIA DOMESTIC 77.2
INTERNATIONAL 72.7
AIR INDIA EXPRESS DOMESTIC 73.5
INTERNATIONAL 81,5
ALLIANCE AIR DOMESTIC 68.3
PRIVATE SCHEDULED CARRIERS
NAME OF THE CARRIER NATURE OF OPERATION PASSENGER LOAD FACTOR*
(%)
INDIGO DOMESTIC 79.4
INTERNATIONAL 82.4
SP!CEJET DOMESTIC 81.8
INTERNATIONAL 79.0
JET AIRWAYS DOMESTIC 78.4
INTERNATIONAL 84.3
JET LITE DOMESTIC 80.1
GO AIR DOMESTIC 79.1
AIR ASIA DOMESTIC 76.1
AIR COSTA DOMESTIC 74.1
VISTARA DOMESTIC 53.7
*PASSENGER LOAD FACTOR= REVENUE PASSENGER KILOMETERS PERFORMED/ AVAILABLE SEAT KILOMETERS
Note: 1. Air Asia started operating in June 2014.

2. Vistara started operating In January 2015.

Booking of tickets by airlines is a commercial aspect of airline in which Ministry does not interfere; It is decided by airlines themselves depending upon market factors and international practices.

This information was given by Minister of State for Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma in a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha today.

-Ministry of Civil Aviation, 08-December, 2015

In aviation policy draft, India seeks to make air travel affordable

In aviation policy draft, India seeks to make air travel affordable 

In aviation policy draft, India seeks to make air travel affordable
Incentives to fly to small towns at affordable costs and easing the norms for domestic carriers to operate services abroad are some of the highlights of the new draft aviation policy, released on Friday for inputs from stakeholders before finalisation.
The primary aim of the policy is to ensure a tariff of no more than Rs.2,500 per ticket for each flying-hour with a host of incentives and other benefits to both airport developers and operators to make that happen.
“A lot of consultation has taken place. We invite suggestions from stakeholders and public — since it involves the people of India. After all those suggestions come in, we will look into it,” Civil Aviation Minister Pusapati Ashok Gajapathi Raju said.
“The policy will also have a fixed period of existence, so that Industry can plan in advance. That is the idea,” the minister told a press conference to unveil the new draft, along with his deputy Mahesh Sharma.
“The basic behind of National Civil Aviation Policy is to take flying to the masses,” Civil Aviation Secretary Rajiv Nayan Choubey said, adding: operators will get some doles to fly to smaller towns with incentives linked to fuel prices and inflation.
“We currently have some 430 airstrips and airports. But only around 90 in operation — nearly 300-odd are not being used. This is a Huge unused asset. These airports will form the basis for enhancing our regional connectivity,” Choubey added.
He said these will be upgraded into a no-frills airport at cost of Rs.50 crore each. Besides, to make operations in such airports feasible, the security will be aircraft-based — so that the airport is sanitised just around an hour or two before the flight.
The policy dwells on upgrade of airports, better regional connectivity, easing of norms for flying abroad, further liberalisation in open skies regime, development of cargo business, chopper services, attracting investments in maintenance sector, ground handling and security.
For an open skies regime, the draft policy proposes total liberalisation in time-bound manner, but based on a reciprocal arrangement from the partner country. It has proposed three ways forward on allowing domestic airline operators to fly abroad:
One, to continue with the existing norm of five-year operation with a 20-aircraft fleet. Two, to abolish this altogether. Three, draft new set of norms under which an operator must earn some minimum credit with domestic operations before being allowed to fly abroad.
“Our aim is to create an ecosystem that will enable 30 crore (30 million) domestic tickets per annum by 2022 and 50 core by 2027. Similarly, increase the international ticketing to 20 crore by 2017,” Choubey said.
Indian carriers ferried 67.38 million domestic passengers in 2014, to register a growth of 9.7 percent over the 61.43 million in the previous year. In the first nine months of this year, 59.02 million passengers were ferried to log a growth of 20.1 percent.
According to the official Make in India campaign, the domestic Indian civil aviation market — which has around 14 scheduled operators — is the ninth largest in the world and is projected to occupy the third spot by 2020.
Three international carriers current have stakes in scheduled Indian airlines in partnerships with domestic companies — Singapore Airlines with the Tatas, Air Asia again with the Tatas and Etihad with Jet Airways.
-30 October 2015 , IANS , New Delhi

IndiGo eyes up to $510 million in India’s biggest IPO in three years – sources

IndiGo eyes up to $510 million in India’s biggest IPO in three years – sources

The operator of top Indian airline IndiGo is looking to raise up to $510 million in its initial public offering (IPO), according to sources, betting on an improved financial outlook helped by lower oil prices and surging passenger growth.

That figure is higher than previously expected; bankers said in the summer that the company was expected to raise up to $400 million, but its valuations have since been bolstered after it reported a big rise in annual profits.

InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, which operates the low-cost airline, has set the indicative price band for the IPO at between 700 and 765 rupees per share, according to the three sources directly involved in the process.

At the top end of the price band, the airline would raise as much as $510 million, making it the largest IPO in the Indian market since 2012, and giving the company a market value of about $4.2 billion, said the sources.

The sources did not want to be named ahead of a public announcement. A spokeswoman for IndiGo did not respond to a request for comment.

IndiGo, whose rivals in the Indian aviation market include Jet Airways and SpiceJet, has been the only consistently profitable airline in the country for the last seven years, according to consultancy Centre for Aviation.

Its share sale, set to be the first airline listing in nine years, will open on Oct. 27. The company plans to use the proceeds to pay off some outstanding aircraft leasing liabilities and to expand its business.

Some investors, however, said the pricing was on the high side. “Even though IndiGo is doing well and it is the country’s most profitable airline, the pricing for this issue is a bit aggressive,” said Neeraj Dewan, director at brokerage Quantum Securities.

The IPO is set to be the biggest airline public issue in India since low-cost carrier Deccan Aviation’s market debut in 2006. It will also be the second high-profile public offering this month, triggering hopes of a revival in India’s sluggish capital market activity.

Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd, India’s biggest coffee chain operator, was oversubscribed for its up to $177 million IPO which closed on Friday.

IndiGo’s book for cornerstone investors – guaranteed a major share of the offering regardless of the final price – will open on Oct. 26. The IPO will close on Oct. 29 for all investors, according to the company’s prospectus.

($1 = 64.7050 Indian rupees)

(Editing by Pravin Char)

-Reuters, By Sumeet Chatterjee

62 Jet, AI pilots board IndiGo

62 Jet, AI pilots board IndiGo

As many as 62 pilots of Jet Airways and Air India have flown out of the two airlines in a little over one year to join other carriers, with a majority of them boarding the Rahul Bhatia-promoted IndiGo.

While private carrier Jet Airways has lost 30 pilots in 15 months to budget carrier IndiGo, state-owned Air India has seen the migration of 32 pilots in the past one year, industry sources said.

“Some 30 pilots including ATR commanders and Boeing 737 first officers have left Jet Airways in the past 15 months to take up employment with IndiGo for better pay packages and work environment,” sources said.

Most of these pilots have already joined IndiGo after serving the mandatory 6-month notice period, they said, adding the rest are expected to board the airline in the next one to two months.

When contacted, a Jet Airways spokesperson termed the resignation of the pilots as a part of normal attrition faced by organisations.

“This is part of the normal attrition faced by organisations across industries. In all cases of resignations, the relevant provisions of notice period are applicable,” the spokesperson said.

Jet Airways employs sufficient number of type-rated crew to ensure optimal use of its fleet, he added. A type rating is a regulating agency’s certification of an airplane pilot to fly a certain aircraft type that requires additional training beyond the scope of the initial license and aircraft class training.

Sources said the “flexible” service contracts offered by IndiGo is one of the reasons apart from the higher pay packets for the pilots quitting Jet Airways.

IndiGo offers seven different types of job contracts to its employees, providing greater flexibility, as against a single conventional contract by most of the domestic airliners, sources said.

Confirming the resignation by 32 of its pilots in the last one year, a senior Air India official said this has not affected the airline’s operations in any way.

“Of course, 32 pilots have quit the airline in the last one year to join other carriers, including IndiGo and some Gulf airlines, but this has not impacted Air India operations. Requirement-based hiring of pilots is an on-going process,” the official said.

Significantly, several domestic airlines in the past have voiced their concern on the poaching of skilled workforce, particularly of pilots, engineers and cabin crew by the competitors.

Acknowledging that the industry was facing the problem of poaching, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Mahesh Sharma had in March this year indicated putting in place some mechanism to check it.

The poaching of staff “results in crippling shortage of trained manpower for airlines…We can ask the DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) to frame guidelines to address this matter,” Sharma had said.

-PTI | Oct 11, 2015