BENGALURU- India’s youngest carrier, Akasa Air (QP) first Boeing 737 MAX 8-200, will land at Bengaluru Airport (BLR). Further, the plane will be the 20th aircraft to join the fleet of QP, allowing them to start international operations.
Akasa Air (QP) recently reported an operating loss of ₹602 crore. The airline’s revenue amounted to ₹777.8 crore. While its operational expenses reached ₹1,866 crore, as per data presented by Minister of State for Civil Aviation VK Singh in Lok Sabha.
Akasa Air Boeing 737 MAX
On July 28, 2023, the plane took its delivery flight from Boeing Field Airport (BFI) in Seattle and landed at Reykjavik (KEF) in Iceland.
The plane stopped at KEF for the first refueling stop. Further, it took off again on July 30, 2023, from KEF at 2:22 PM UTC. After being airborne for almost six hours, it landed again to carry out its second refueling.
The plane landed at Larnaca (LCA) in Cyprus at around 8:25 PM UTC. Currently, the plane is at LCA and preparing for the final phase of its delivery to Bengaluru (BLR), India.
Further, the flight will take off from LAC at 11:40 PM local time and is expected to arrive at BLR at around 9:10 AM in the morning on August 1, 2023.
The aircraft, with test registration N4027G (line 7859), had been designated for VietJet, but it was not accepted and is registered with QP as VT-YAV.
About Boeing 737 MAX 200
To cater to the demands of the rapidly expanding low-cost aviation sector, Boeing designed the 737 MAX 200.
This variant will comprise about 35 percent of the single-aisle airline capacity by 2033. Although the core of the single-aisle market will remain at 160 seats, the 737 MAX 200 will offer carriers like Ryanair (FR) the potential to generate revenue from 11 extra seats.
Akasa Air Reports 602 Crore Losses
According to an individual familiar with Akasa’s plans, “It is only after you reach a certain size and scale that the costs incurred on route developments start yielding returns. However, the airline has done well, expanding aggressively and launching new routes.”
In its inaugural year of 2006-07, IndiGo incurred losses of ₹174.1 crore and operated six aircraft. However, it turned profitable in its third year of operation, generating ₹82 crore in profits.
Akasa Air (QP) surpassed SpiceJet (SG) in terms of domestic market share in June 2023.
In a remarkable feat, Akasa, led by Vinay Dube, recorded a total of 6.2 lakh passengers last month, outperforming SpiceJet, which reported 5.5 lakh passengers.
IndiGo (6E) continues to dominate the domestic market with an impressive market share of 63.2%. Air India (AI), a part of the Tata Group, secured the second position with 9.7%, followed by Vistara (UK) at 8.1% and AirAsia India (I5) at 8%.
Rapid Growth and New Orders Update
Currently, Akasa Air possesses a fleet of 19 Boeing 737 MAX 8, with one more set to join this month. Upon the addition of the 20th aircraft, the airline will become eligible for international operations.
Dube highlighted their strong financial position. He stated, “We were adequately funded to order 72 aircraft and can add 4 more on top of that. We are also adequately funded to place another three-digit aircraft order by year-end.”
Dube’s optimism about Akasa Air’s growth prospects comes in the wake of large-scale aircraft orders by Indian carriers such as Air India and IndiGo.
IndiGo (6E) recently placed an order for 500 aircraft from Airbus, while Air India (AI) ordered 470 aircraft from both Boeing and Airbus. However, Dube emphasized that Akasa Air focuses on building a sustainable airline that will endure over time rather than chasing rapid expansion.
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