SpiceJet looks at more aircraft acquisition

DELHI: India’s fourth-largest domestic carrier, SpiceJet is set to trigger a war in the sky as it finalises a Rs 72,000 crore deal for 100 narrow-bodied aircraft with French manufacturer Airbus.

The deal will make SpiceJet the first Indian domestic private carrier to have Airbus and Boeing in its fleet, reports The New Indian Express.

“Right now, we are very focused on procuring new planes,” SpiceJet CEO Ajay Singh said. Airbus and US-based aircarft aircraft manufacturer Boeing are locked in a battle to supply narrow-bodied planes to SpiceJet and are wooing and offering the airline with aggressive offers.

A government official said SpiceJet had ordered 40 fuel-efficient Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in 2014, which it would be delivered in 2018. “Ordering 100 fuel efficient Boeing 737 MAXs could take time, and it could hamper SpiceJet’s growth plan in India,” said a senior industry official.

While Airbus dominates the domestic short-haul market, which uses narrow-bodied planes, Boeing has dominated the long-haul market in India with wide-bodied passenger aircraft. Airbus commands a two-third market share of aircraft in India.

There are 460 narrow- and wide-bodied passenger planes with Indian carriers, and 194 more have been ordered since 2014.