Creditors approve Jet Airways resolution plan

Creditors to Jet Airways have approved a resolution plan which will give the country’s oldest private carrier a new lease of life, the airline said in a regulatory filing on Saturday.

The plan submitted by a consortium of London-based Kalrock Capital and UAE-based businessman Murari Lal Jalan comes after months of talks over the airline’s future and was confirmed in the regulatory filing, which gave no details of the deal.

A person aware of the developments said the new owners agreed to pump in ₹1,000 crore as working capital for the revival of the airline. Another ₹1,000 crore will be given to creditors over a period of five years.

Financial creditors of the airline will also get 10% stake in the company, the person said, though the plan remains subject to approvals from the bankruptcy court and the country’s airline regulator.

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Jet Airways — which operated a fleet of more than 120 planes serving dozens of domestic destinations and international hubs such as Singapore, London and Dubai — was forced in April 2019 to ground all flights, crippled by mounting losses as it attempted to compete with low-cost rivals.

After Jet halted operations, at least 280 slots were vacant in Mumbai and 160 in Delhi, which were then given to its rivals. The revival plan is also based on getting some of these slots back.

“The plan is to ramp up slowly and to increase capacity gradually as they will be starting afresh,” the person quoted above said. Any resumption of flights will likely not happen for between three and six months at least. Since its operations were halted, the airline and its lenders had been looking for suitors. Jet’s financial and operational creditors were owed nearly ₹30,000 crore after the operations were halted.

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