Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Rakesh Jhunjhunwala says Akasa Air is a frugal airline

There will be a lot more flying as discretionary spending per capita goes up, he added. Jhunjhunwala also cited civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia's prediction that India expects to reach 40 crore air travellers in the next four years.

Crediting the surge in the number of flyers, the 62-year-old noted that India's aircraft fleet size requirement will almost double by 2027 and it will need 1,200 aircraft

Speaking about the challenges in the aviation sector, Jhunjhunwala said he was "prepared for Akasa Air to even fail, but better to have tried and failed than not tried at all".

The Indian aviation sector is under pressure because of high jet fuel prices and high taxes due to which most airlines are reporting losses.

The ace investor has teamed up with former chief executives of IndiGo and Jet Airways to launch Akasa, which loosely translates to sky.

"I hope to prove people wrong," Jhunjhunwala had said at an industry event in February. "Now it's become a matter of ego,”

He has invested $35 million for an estimated 40 percent stake in the airline, which aims to have 18 aircraft within 12 months from the launch and 72 over the next five years.

10/08/22 Ravi Prakasjh Kumar/Moneycontrol

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