Indian Aviation is set to witness a competition, which we have never witnessed before. Both growth drivers – Air India and IndiGo are all set to go head-to-head on various fronts. Aviation Consultancy Firm CAPA India has released a report, in which it has declared 2024 as a year, in which the domestic landscape of Indian Aviation is all set to change.
Intense Competition between Air India & IndiGo
Asian Aviation Consultancy Firm CAPA India said that both the leading airlines of India are going to witness a tough competition. This competition will be of that intensity that we have never ever witnessed.
As per the report, IndiGo is expected to maintain its strong position in the Indian domestic market. Despite challenges in capacity, the airline is expected to remain on the front on doestic battle.
On the International front, we may witness the introduction of Business class service by IndiGo. This is going to be a significant milestone for the airline, considering the fact that it is also eyeing delivery of Airbus A321XLR aircraft in this year.
As per CAPA India, India is currently having a stable aviation ecosystem with two players having deep pockets strengthening their roots. This is possibly the first time that such situation has occured in Indian Aviation History.
Air India in 2024
On one hand, where IndiGo looks at domestic market and Business class, Air India will look to strengthen its presence in the long and ultra long haul market from India. The airline is emphasizing its focus on Non-stop routes. Air India will start its widebody fleet refurbishment drive in this year. First aircraft to enter into service by June/July 2024. This enhanced product is set to change the perception of Air India in passengers mind.
There are high chances that following the footprints of Air India, IndiGo can also enter the long haul international market. This year, the airline was poised to induct widebody aircraft in its fleet but it was not able to do so. There were rumours that the airline is in talks with Boeing for 25 Dreamliner jets, but the order was just a rumour and never became a reality.
IndiGo already operates a fleet of 2 wet-leased Boeing 777s. It acquired both of them last year from Turkish Airlines on a lease period of 6 months. Recently, lease on 1 Boeing 777 has been expanded from 6 months to 1 year. IndiGo use this jets for feeding the Indian traffic to Turkish Airlines via its base in Istanbul.
SpiceJet and Akasa Air in Domestic Market
CAPA India expects that in 2024, both SpiceJet and Akasa Air will also have a significance in defining the domestic market of India. Akasa Air has received deliveries of 2 Boeing 737 MAX jets in December month. By March, it will receive 4 more aircraft. Chief Commercial Officer Praveen Iyer recently said that the airline wants end FY 2024 with a fleet of 26 jets and growth rate of 35% with respect to previous year. Akasa Air is all set to start flights internationally, with first phase including flights to Doha, Kuwait, Jeddah and Riyadh.
With the recently approved funding plan, CAPA India says that SpiceJet is all set to resurge. The airline recently received a funding of Rs 2,250 crore. The funding will arrive in two tranches and will be used to clear employee statutory dues, creditors dues, ATF dues and acquiring new aircraft. Mumbai-based Mohapatra duo are all set to acquire 21.98 percent stake in the airline by investing a sum of Rs 1,100 crore.
SpiceJet has also shown interest for bidding for GoFirst. Only time will tell what is the result of this expression? However, CAPA India believes that SpiceJet will need more funding that it has right now. With the current funding, the airline can persist for 3-4 years but for later period, it will require additional funding.
Source : Financial Express