Enter your email to read this article
Read news on any topic, in one place, from publishers like The Economist, FT, Bloomberg and more.

Air India to make substantial investment in “historic” aircraft order

The Tata Group had acquired Air India and Air India Express under a government-led strategic divestment programme in January this year. (File Photo)

“We are in deep discussion with Boeing, Airbus and engine manufacturers for an historic order of the latest-generation aircraft that will power Air India’s medium and long-term growth. At the risk of gross understatement, the investment will be substantial," Wilson said at the JRD Tata Memorial Trust event in Mumbai.

The airline is also working on restoring some older planes which are currently grounded. In addition, the full-service carrier has finalised leases for 30 aircraft which will be delivered over the next 12 months. The delivery of these 30 planes will commence next week and the airline is set to lease more aircraft and is in final stages of negotiation for the same, Wilson said.

The Tata Group had acquired Air India and Air India Express under a government-led strategic divestment programme in January this year. The Tata Group also runs Vistara in partnership with Singapore Airlines in a 51:49 venture. Recently, it also took complete control of AirAsia India after the exit of AirAsia from the venture. The Tata Group has already announced merger of Air India Express and AirAsia India to make it a single low-cost model and is working on a consolidation between Air India and Vistara to make a single full-service airline. The two kinds of model are expected to be on one single platform of brand Air India.

“We will increase our market share to at least 30% in domestic India and on international routes to and from India, multiples of our current share. We will take a leadership position in technology, sustainability, and innovation. And we will attract the best talent by becoming India’s employer of choice," Wilson said.

The airline will focus on fixing the basics over the next six months, and will work on building for excellence in the subsequent year.

“And by April 2024 or thereabouts, we will leverage the work done in the earlier phases to Climb rapidly, so that by 2027 we have scaled the heights of our aspiration," Wilson said.

The company wants to build a global loyal customer base, become a leader in safety, reliability, punctuality and trust, is working on building a compelling employee proposition and further wants to become pioneers in technology, sustainability, and innovation. Simultaneously, it also aims to continue being commercially efficient and deliver good returns to the shareholders.

Air India has restored 20 aircraft that had been grounded for years due to lack of parts and lack of money and is also working on replacing carpets, curtains, seat cushions, covers, seats and in-flight entertainment systems. The airline is also set to launch new non-stop service to San Francisco, New York and Newark from Mumbai in a few weeks.

Wilson said that 2023 will be an exciting year for Air India and the airline no longer has financial constraints. Bullish on Indian aviation potential, he said that India is on the cusp of an aviation boom and it will take a progressively larger role in the global aviation industry.

Catch all the Corporate news and Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates & Live Business News.
More Less
Related Stories
Tata plans to merge carriers under Air India, nix Vistara brand
In a bid to streamline its airline business, Tata group is planning to merge its four airline brands under Air India Ltd
From analysis to the latest developments in health, read the most diverse news in one place.
Air India to introduce premium economy class : CEO
Air India chief Wilson said the airline will increase its market share to at least 30 per cent in domestic and international routes
Air India in talks with Airbus, Boeing to buy planes, says CEO
Campbell Wilson said Air India planned to expand its fleet and global network, aiming to increase its market share to 30% on both domestic and international routes
Air India will increase its market share to around 30% on all routes: CEO
Air India airlines aims to grow its wide-body and narrow-body fleet as well as expand the global network in the next five years.
Air India gives cabin crew option to extend their VRS release date
Air India has given an option to the cabin crew who have opted for voluntary retirement scheme to extend their tenure until 31 January next year
One place to find news on any topic, from hundreds of sites.
Air India plans to hire pilots from abroad for wide-body planes amid scarcity
Air India plans to hire expat pilots for its Boeing 777 planes as the airline is facing a shortage of pilots amid plans to expand its fleet as well as international operations, according to sources