Thursday 15 November 2012

Will Kingfisher Airlines (KFA) can ever Fly again ? As per most of the Aviation Experts NO :(

10500  16 11 2012

KFA pleads with govt to restart operations

 The management of grounded Kingfisher Airlines (KFA) made a desperate plea to the aviation ministry onThursday for restarting operations. While promising that it will pay May salary to employees (which were to be paid before Diwali) within a week, KFA CEO Sanjay Agarwal has requested aviation secretary K N Shrivastava to ask Airport operators not to insist on full payment of dues as a precondition for restarting operations. 

Both the state-run Airports Authority of India (AAI) and the GVK-backed Mumbai Airport had earlier written to DGCA not to allow KFA to fly again till their dues are cleared entirely. GMR-backed Delhi airport has filed criminal cases against KFA for bounced cheques. Agarwal in his letter to Shrivastava on Thursday has said that the Airline is in talks to restructure loans with the SBI-led consortia of lenders to KFA. 

KFA has debt of over Rs 10,000 crore and accumulated losses of Rs 20,000 crore. 

The CEO has thanked the Aviation ministry for not giving KFA's slots to other airlines despite the fact that it has not operated any flight since October 1 and its licence is suspended. "Agarwal has admitted that had the slots been given away, the airline would find it even more difficult to find an investor," said sources. 

Without giving any time frame, the airline management has promised to submit a restructuring plan to the DGCA. The letter promising payment of May salary in a week comes a day after employees threatened to launch some agitation. 

Kingfisher promoter Dr Vijay Mallya has been assuring the Airline would get re-capitalized from some investor since last November. 

No external investor has come forward till now and the parent UB Group is the only one infusing some funds now and then. In a meeting with DGCA chief Mr Arun Mishra some weeks back, Agarwal had said the airline would be funded by UB Group. 

The Airline's Licence expires on December 31 and it can't be renewed unless first ongoing suspension is lifted. 

Aviation industry experts say even if the licence lapses, KFA can get it renewed later. 

For instance, the licence of MDLR and Paramount Airlines has been lapsed for a long time but not cancelled. 

After the initial "soft handling" of KFA crisis when the aviation ministry for months refused to take action against the airline despite its failing financial health and failure to maintain schedule, it now finds it tough to extend any more favours to the airline. "Kingfisher will be allowed to restart operations only if it is able to convince us that it has the finances to maintain its schedule safely. We do not want any more operations in fits and starts," said a senior official, hinting at the new-found toughness for KFA. 

Shekhar Gupta
Capt. Shekhar Gupta [ Pilot, DIAM, M.Ae.S.I., MAOPA [USA] ] 
Blog : 

Shekhar is a Professional Pilot with more then 8 years experience of Flying on 14 different types of Air crafts in 10 different countries with accident free flying record. Shekhar is good in Flying Training as well as in Ground class for Pilots. Shekhar started his flying career from Skycabs [Colombo ] and worked for many Airlines Training Companies from different part of the world. He trained more then 350 Pilots who are flying world wide. He is a member of Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association [ USA], Royal Society of Aeronautics [ UK], Delhi Flying Club, Aeronautical Society of India, MP Flying Club Indore, Aeronautical Research Society. He is a frequent flyer on AA, Air India, British Airways, Cathey Pacific, Delta Airlines, Emerites, Ethihad, Jet Airways, Kingfisher and many more. Shekhar is an active member of  set up by Govt. of Canada and Air Transport Association of Canada.

His recent passion is Aviation SEO for which he takes classes for IIT & IIM students in India and others in abroad. And  a new proposed virtual Air Charter Services.

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