-Jet S2 3502 cleared for take-off;
-Cleared for takeoff, Jet S2 3502.
The last Jet Airways flight took off on 17th April 2019 from the Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport, Amritsar after a 29 year-long series of flights.
The B737 departed at 10.18 am and arrived at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai at 12.22 am, which was exactly 38 minutes prior to the actual arrival time.
Naresh Goyal, the founder Chairman of Jet Airways had always been an admirer of punctual flight times, and yes, he made sure that the last one too fits the timer well.
Jet Airways was granted an airline status on 14 January 1995, and soon after that, it had become the carrier which not only flew with its livery and the passengers, rather it started carrying the pride of India engulfed in its warm hospitality, services and comfort.
As stated earlier, Jet was a pioneer in operating timely flights, but unfortunately, the management couldn’t keep an eye on the financials.
Birth and Boom: When Jet Airways commenced operations, Air India used to be the only Indian airline. Soon, it entered into a marketing tie-up with KLM and placed an order worth $375 million for building up its fleet.
Jet Airways started capturing the Indian market and recorded a 20% market share in the year 2000. The size of the fleet and personnel kept growing at a very good pace.
Operations boomed from the major Indian airports at the most perfect time slots. The company got listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange in 2004 and became a public company.
Jet Airways went into partnerships and code sharing alliances from time to time, and the most noted alliance was the one with the Abu Dhabi hubbed airline, ‘Etihad Airways’. All such events added to the presence and the outreach of Jet Airways in the perfect way.
Crisis: Rejection is a sour pill to swallow. When Jet Airways was incurring losses, the suppliers rejected supplies, passengers rejected offers because of the rising ticket prices, and the lenders rejected financial aid in the darkest hour.
An airline which had the second-largest share in 2016 is not even on the charts today. The financials went into a dense, turbulent patch of deficits, and the profits could not be posted again.
Soon after going through a series of not so favourable instances, the airline could not afford to pay the outstanding lease and was even denied access to fuel by certain suppliers.
These incidents raise questions, the answers to whom are still opaque. How can an airline, so big and strong, sink in such a short period of time?
The Indian aviation industry is growing at a pace of 17% per annum, but where is the consumer force going?
Why is it so that the low-cost carriers are still unaffected by the slowdown? We have been searching for these answers, but all they do is leave us baffled every now and then.
Aftermath: The collapse and the closure of Jet Airways didn’t just affect the 20,000 employees or their 1,00,000 family members in total, but rather it has a deep impact on everyone who’s keen about the industry.
Well, Jet Airways did leave us in despair, but there was a section that was happy. Yes, you read it right, Jet Airways actually vacated more than 440 slots at the Delhi and Mumbai Airport.
These slots had to be filled by someone, and that someone kept an eye on the international market share too.
SpiceJet managed to get the biggest gulf in these slots, winning 43% of them, while GoAir, Vistara, Indigo, and Air Asia winning the rest.
Amid the crisis in the industry, these low-cost carriers increased their number of flights and discovered new routes.
SpiceJet and Indigo started flying towards the west Asian destinations extensively. They even stormed operations towards the far east Asian destinations.
Mistakes are often made by the management, faulty decisions are also taken. Environment scanning and keeping a keen eye on the market is very much essential.
The Indian aviation market had taken a complete shift and the low-cost carriers controlled the game in this price-sensitive market.
Be it Indigo, GoAir or SpiceJet, all of them operating, nevertheless on the business model designed by Southwest Airlines back in the 1970s.
The way how this shift wreaked havoc for Jet Airways, Air India has suffered in the same way. It’s the taxpayer who has kept Air India alive, or else it would have died long ago.
Mohammad Imbesat Syed
MBA (International Business
Jamia Millia Islamia