As it continues to expand its fleet and employees, Akasa Air said it would hire nearly 1,000 people and place a “three-digit aircraft order” by the end of this year. The fresh hirings will take the overall strength of Akasa Air to 3,000 by the end of March 2024, PTI reported.
The airline, co-founded by late billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, also plans to start international operations by the end of 2023, PTI quoted Akasa Air chief Vinay Dube as saying. Dube said the initial overseas destinations are still in the process of being finalised.
“We have more than 2,000 employees today, and by the end of the next fiscal, we will be probably around 3,000 plus employees… (out of them, there are) around 1,100 pilots and flight attendants,” Dube said.
“We may not have the aircraft today, but we will have to hire for the aircraft that will be there three months down the road. People have to come, and they have to be trained. So, you always hire in advance for the number of aircraft you have deliveries for,” PTI quoted Dube as saying.
The former Jet Airways CEO said the airline would place a “three-digit aircraft order” by the end of 2024. Akasa Air, which started operations on August 7, 2022, currently operates 110 flights every day to 17 destinations.
It has placed an order for 72 Boeing 737 Max aircraft, and 19 of them are already in its fleet. The 20th aircraft will be inducted in April, following which it will also be eligible to fly overseas. The delivery of all 72 Boeing aircraft is expected to be completed by early 2027.
Dube said in the next financial year, Akasa Air would add another nine planes to its fleet, taking the tally to 28.
“We are already flying 110 flights a day and we will be 150 flights per day by the end of the summer season. It will be continued growth but not growth for the sake of growth,” Dube said.
“We have no market share targets, not chasing any position in aviation, and we have got a target to make customers happy, target to make our employees happy. That is what we are doing and we can do that, that is sustainable if we have got a very strong cost structure. So, those are the three pillars we are focusing on,” he further said.
In February, Akasa Air flew 3.61 lakh passengers, and its domestic market share stood at 3 per cent. The airline’s on-time performance (OTP) was 87 per cent, as per latest official data.