Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Is India's Jet Airways finally dead?

 India’s Jet Airways, grounded for nearly four years now, seems to be at the end of its rope.

Jet’s air operator’s permit, allowing commercial use of aircraft, expired last week (May 19), with little chance of an extension.

The permit was granted last year to ensure full-scale operations by last October. It requires the operator to have personnel, assets, and a system to ensure the safety of its employees and the general public. An extension of the permit is usually considered at least a month before the expiry date of the carrier’s license. There is been no word yet on the matter from authorities.

The airline has also witnessed mass resignations at the executive level. This includes CEO-designate Sanjiv Kapoor who quit recently.

“JKC (Jalan Kalrock Consortium) has not yet interviewed anyone to be their new CEO and has not yet created a shortlist of candidates,” Moneycontrol quoted an industry insider on May 19.

In October 2020, the London-based consortium was recognized as the successful bidder for the bankrupt airline.

Jet Airways suspended operations in April 2019 after failing to secure emergency funding of $48.4 million. It has remained stuck in financial cobwebs since then.

Last November, India’s National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), an arbitration panel, allowed JKC six months to pay $22.4 million to Jet’s creditors. This period ended on May 14.

JKC also informed NCLT that it needed more time to clear Jet’s dues and implement a revival plan.

Jet reported a loss of $6.5 million for the quarter ended March 2023, continuing a trend that began in November 2018.

22/05/2023 Mimansa Verma/Quartz

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