Saturday, August 11, 2018

Jet Airways needs urgent recapitalisation, could report higher Q-on-Q loss for June quarter

Jet Airways, which has been in the news this past week due to its precarious financial situation and the bid to cut salaries to get a grip on costs, could report a higher loss in the June quarter compared to the previous March quarter. After the airline’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) On Thursday, the Q1 FY19 results scheduled for Friday were postponed as its audit committee did not recommend the results to the board for approval. This has already led to the further hammering of the Jet Airways scrip on bourses as investors panicked. And more than the recent events, this single action points to a slow unraveling of one of India’s oldest airlines. The bourses have now written to the airline seeking an explanation for the results’ fiasco.

That Jet Airways has been facing turbulent times is amply clear from some numbers analysts have put together: The airline is earning less from each passenger continuously for the last eight quarters, quarter on quarter, according to an analysis by Kotak Institutional Equities. And the airline’s spread (which is Revenue per available seat km minus the cost) has been the thinnest in the March quarter since 2015. This points to a relentless increase in costs as revenues fail to keep pace. And brokerage ICICI Securities has estimated a loss of Rs 1500 crore in FY19 under present crude, currency and fare scenario for Jet. This works out to almost Rs 4 crore daily loss for the airline.
10/08/18 Sindhu Bhattacharya/First Post