Exclusive: Don’t Underestimate Vijay Mallya And Kingfisher Airlines

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Based in Bangalore, Kingfisher Airline is the first low budget airfare airline and is the subsidiary of Kingfisher. Photo - CityTravelGuide

While every expert is of the opinion that Kingfisher Airlines is on the verge of collapse, Vijay Mallya is not going to give up that easily.

Arabian Gazette has an information that Mallya already have a foreign airline partner. Only thing he need to do is to clear the regulatory issues for the entry of his partner.

At this point of time, his main objective is to clear these hurdles. Grounding more than 75 per cent of the airline’s fleet, rolling-back almost all international operations, staff members not getting wages and delaying outstanding payments are some of the pressure points he has managed to develop for the UPA government to clear the FDI policy on aviation.

The impact of all these factors on increased air fares is only adding more impetus, further mounting pressure on Manmohan government to give a go ahead to the policy, taking into consideration consumers’ point of view.

You may ask at this juncture: Why Vijay Mallya doing all this on his own? The answer is quite straightforward. Fact of the matter is that except Kingfisher, there is no airline in India that requires this new proposed FDI policy that will give foreign airlines an opportunity to pick up a stake in an indian carrier.

Jet Airways is in good position, with Naresh Goyal having no intention to raise fresh equity as he sits tight on a promoter holding of more than  80 per cent in his airline. On the other hand, Indigo is well on track with its IPO plans and a time-tested, profitable expansion plan.

If you are of the view that the cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines is not going to have any takers, consider this: Kingfisher Airlines has a fleet comprising 12 owned aircraft, owns substantial prime slots on trunk routes such as Mumbai-Delhi and had a market-share of around 25 per cent prior to shrinking its operations. Kingfisher has tactfully given up unprofitable slots in smaller cities or excess ports, and is expected to find them vacant once it resumes full-fledged operations in its new avatar.

Vijay Mallya continues to own one of the world’s most costly yachts, a luxury Kingfisher villa in goa, more than ten vintage cars worth millions, team in IPL as well as a Formula One team. His $4-billion group comprising breweries, biotechnology and real estate businesses continue to remain technically unaffected.

 

 

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