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Some Good News: Air India Exp. likely to record profits for 4th straight year

PW Bureau

State carrier’s low-cost division is expected to record net profit of about Rs 250 crore for 2018-19, compared to Rs 262 crore in the year before Mumbai: Air India Express, Air India’s low-cost International airline arm, is set to post profits in 2018-19 for the fourth year in a row amid the government’s attempts to raise USD1 billion from the sale of debt-laden state carrier. The company’s low-cost division is expected to record a net profit of about Rs 250 crore for 2018-19, compared to Rs 262 crore in the year before, chief executive officer K Shyam Sundar told media. The total revenue for the full year is expected to be Rs 4,100 crore compared with Rs 3,612 crore in the previous year, he said as most of the carrier’s domestic airlines are grappling with losses. Air India Express connects non-metro cities in the country to neighboring global destinations, mostly around the Gulf region.

Profit despite rising aviation-fuel costs

Even though high fuel prices impacted their earnings, the airline demonstrated that they could operate at a time when the industry is expected to post operating losses of around Rs 10,000 crore. Air India recorded a net loss of Rs 5,337 crore in FY18, down 18 percent year-on-year. “We ought to be an example for the entire industry. We just increased our prices in line with fuel costs,” Sundar said. For the last five years, Air India Express has been operating a fleet of 25 Boeing 737 New Generational planes. Shyam Sundar said that has to change, according to a report. Air India Express was expected to enhance its fleet to 36 planes by 2016-17, which did not happen.

“We ought to be an example for the entire industry. We just increased our prices in line with fuel costs”- K Shyam Sundar, CEO

Air India Express is an Indian low-cost airline headquartered in Kochi, Kerala. It is operated by Air India Express Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Indian flag carrier airline Air India.