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This airline seems to have benefitted the most from Jet crisis

PW Bureau

Industry experts have said that a real picture of who benefitted the most from the Jet crisis will emerge only when both the airlines declare their earnings for Q4 New Delhi: After Jet Airways’ exit from the stage, various domestic airlines in India have aggressively expanded their fleets and captured the slots vacated by the grounding of the debt-ridden airline. However, if there’s one airline that is set to score the most in the situation, that is SpiceJet, investment management firm JM Financial has said.

Most number of routes allocated to SpiceJet

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has allocated SpiceJet 130 routes out of Jet’s portfolio, including 68 prime slots at Mumbai. The figure is higher than the number of slots given to any other Indian airline, including market leader Indigo’s 120. “Availability of additional slots will aid SpiceJet to optimally utilise its increased fleet size,” the JM Financial report said.

SpiceJet has added 100 flights in just over a month

The fact that SpiceJet has been expanding its fleet aggressively was quite evident when it released an official statement on Sunday, saying that it was adding the 100th aircraft to its fleet — becoming only the fourth airline IndiGo, Jet Airways, and state-owned Air India to have done so. “SpiceJet has added 23 planes and over a 100 new flights, most of them connecting the key metros of Mumbai and Delhi, in just over a month’s time,” it had said in the statement. The expansion has further been aided by the fact that both SpiceJet and Jet Airways operate Boeing aircraft. Therefore, at least 20 planes from Jet Airways’ fleet have been handed over to SpiceJet by lessors. JM Financial said that despite lagging behind IndiGo in terms of fleet expansion, it expects SpiceJet to clock “disproportionate growth (in profitability)” relative to its current size.

SpiceJet still has a long way to go

“With 100 aircraft, SpiceJet has definitely scaled up. However, to become the market leader it still has a long way to go, especially in order to keep up with an airline like IndiGo,” Ashish Nainan, an aviation analyst at rating agency CARE Ratings, said. According to DGCA data, IndiGo has the largest pie of the aviation market share as it flew half of all domestic passengers in April. SpiceJet’s and Air India’s market share stood at 13.1 percent and 13.9 percent, respectively. Industry experts have said that a real picture of who benefitted the most from the Jet crisis will emerge only when both the airlines declare their earnings for the fourth quarter.