India’s Vistara to complete fleet rollover by early 3Q23

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Air India wins antitrust nod to buy AirAsia India

Antitrust regulator the Competition Commission of India (CCI) said on June 14 that it “approves the acquisition of the entire shareholding in AirAsia India by Air India,

While Tata Sons currently has an 83.67% shareholding in budget airline AirAsia India, the flag carrier Air India has been a wholly-owned subsidiary of the conglomerate since Tata bought it in January via its vehicle Palace Private Limited in a USD2.4 billion equity-and-debt deal. AirAsia Investment Ltd, part of Malaysia’s Capital holds the remaining 16.33% of AirAsia India, and the Malaysian group has hinted since 2020 that it may seek to exit the joint venture.

Tata Sons requested competition authority approval in April to merge the two airlines, proposing that Air India acquire a 100% stake in the low-cost carrier.

“The proposed combination relates to the acquisition of the entire equity share capital of AirAsia India Private Limited by Air India Ltd, an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Sons Private Limited,” the CCI notice outlined in its approval. “A detailed order of…

Singapore Airlines eyes foreign hubs, in talks re B777Xs

Singapore Airlines (SQ, Singapore Changi) is contemplating establishing hubs outside of Singapore to reduce its dependency on the purely international market in Singapore Changi which proved to be a huge liability during the COVID-19 pandemic, Chief Executive Goh Choon Phong told Bloomberg.

“We recognize that not having a domestic market means challenges. That’s why we have a multi-hub strategy. We’re setting up an external hub where we hope to be able to participate in the growth of that market,” Goh said.

He did not elaborate on where the “external hub” could be located, although he hinted that any such expansion would entail equity investment in other airlines. Due to the regulatory environment in Asia, an application for extensive fifth-, seventh-, or ninth-freedom traffic rights would likely be an uphill battle for the carrier.

Currently, Singapore Airlines Group’s only foreign venture is in India, where the holding owns a 49% stake in Vistara (UK, Delhi Int’l, The remaining 51% stake is owned by Tata Sons, After the Indian conglomerate acquired…

Decision on Air India-Vistara merger likely by YE23 – report

Air India (AI, Mumbai Int’l) owner Tata Sons have held talks with Singapore Airlines (SQ, Singapore Changi), its joint-venture partner in Vistara (UK, Delhi Int’l), to discuss the possibility of a merger of the two full-service carriers, “multiple sources” have told The Indian Express newspaper.

The Singaporean carrier is understood to have asked for a period until the end of 2023 to come to a conclusion as to whether it would permit such a move, the sources divulged on May 16.

Vistara is a 51/49 venture between the Indian conglomerate and Singapore Airlines, while Tata bought a 100% shareholding in state-run Air India in January through its Palace Private Limited vehicle. The two airlines are the sprawling country’s only full-service carriers at present.

“The Tatas and Singapore Airlines discussed the merger possibility earlier this year. SIA had even agreed to join the Tata bid for Air India, but because of the pandemic, it decided to back out given its poor financial condition,” one of the sources close to…

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