Lenders, Etihad and Hindujas meet Jet Airways officials to discuss revival plans

By Anu Sharma

In a fresh sign of efforts to revive Jet Airways, the lenders led by State Bank of India, Hindujas and Etihad met some officials of the airline today, sources in the know told CNBC-TV18.

While most of the senior management has resigned from the currently suspended carrier, the top official at the airline presently is Chief Strategy Officer Rajesh Prasad.

At the meeting, which lasted for over an hour, the stakeholders discussed the current state of the airline, including the position of its slots, international traffic rights and employees.

“Discussions were also held on the amount of funds needed to resume operations at the airline and the number of employees needed for the recommencement,” the sources said, adding that the number of employees still on the rolls of the company was also assessed.

One of the many revival plans proposed by the lenders included a reduced fleet size of 35 Boeing 737s and six to seven wide-bodied Boeing 777s. The number was proposed to be increased to 55 B737s by March 2020.

Jet Airways, reeling under a debt of over Rs 8,000 crore, shut operations for a temporary but indefinite period on April 17. The airline’s promoters and ex-CEO Vinay Dube are currently under the radar of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs as the department is investigating certain alleged irregularities at the company. Ex-chairman Naresh Goyal and Dube have both been restricted from leaving the country.