Air India on Wednesday announced that it has signed agreements to complete the acquisition of 100 per cent shareholding in AirAsia India (AAI). This is a significant development as TATA group's airlines are on a course of restructuring. After the acquisition, AAI will be a subsidiary of Air India.
Consolidation of AirAsia India and Air India Express:
The merger of two Low-cost carriers (LCC) is predictable, and the consolidated carrier to be branded Air India Express, marking a single brand for the LCC segment. Air India also announced that an operational process is underway, and AirAsia India (AAI) will be fully integrated with Air India Express (AIXL).
A working group will evaluate and execute the integration of AI Group's low-cost operations, which will be co-led by Sunil Bhaskaran, CEO & MD of AirAsia India and Aloke Singh, CEO of Air India Express. The group will report to a committee chaired by Air India MD & CEO, Campbell Wilson.
The assessment and implementation of the integration process of AirAsia India (AAI) and Air India Express (AIXL), subject to necessary approvals, is expected to take approximately 12 months, with network and other synergies to be realised progressively during the period.
Also Read: Air India and the transformation journey of TATA's group of airlines
Air India Express and AirAsia India:
Air India Express (IX) is India's first International budget carrier, connecting 19 Indian cities and 14 International destinations. With its fleet of 24 aircraft, the airline provides services on short and medium-haul routes connecting smaller Indian towns directly to the Gulf and South East Asia regions. With its fleet of 29 aircraft, Air Asia India (I5) flies over 50 direct and 100 connecting routes across India.
With this consolidation, passengers will be able to enjoy the Low-cost flexibility on both international and domestic destinations from a single brand Air India Express.