Boeing, an American jet manufacturer, and Akasa Air, India’s newest airline-to-be revealed on Tuesday that it has placed an order for 72 737 MAX aeroplanes.
The airline, which is mainly controlled by ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, was rumoured to be ordering roughly 70 Boeing airplanes on July 28, 2021.
Akasa was founded by Dube and his colleagues Praveen Iyer, chief commercial officer, and head of technology Anand Srinivasan and former IndiGo president Aditya Ghosh is also the co-founder. On October 11, 2021, it acquired a no-objection certificate, the first official permission, and plans to open in the middle of 2022.
The directive by billionaire investor Rakesh airline came months after India’s aviation safety authority cleared the MAX plane for flight, ending a nearly two-and-a-half-year regulatory ban that saw 346 people die in two tragic accidents in five months.
As the nation recovers from a terrible pandemic earlier this year, Jhunjhunwala has teamed up with former CEOs of IndiGo, the country’s largest airline, and Jet Airways (JET.NS) to tap into demand for domestic air travel, which is approaching pre-pandemic levels.
The low-cost carrier was given preliminary approval to begin operations by the civil aviation ministry in October and is anticipated to begin flying next year.
Boeing has a 51-plane market share in India, but ticket wars and excessive expenses have caused full-service airlines to go out of business, notably Kingfisher Airlines in 2012 and Jet Airways in 2019, allowing low-cost carriers and Airbus to gain even more market share.
Following Jet’s demise in 2018, Boeing’s share of India’s 570 narrow-body planes plummeted to 18% from 35%, according to statistics from consultant CAPA India. SpiceJet is now the country’s lone buyer for the MAX jets.
Vinay Dube, the CEO, stated that “We believe that the new 737 MAX aeroplane will support our aim of running not just a cost-efficient, reliable and affordable airline, but also an environmentally friendly company with the youngest and greenest fleet in the Indian skies.”
He also added “India is one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the world with unparalleled potential. We are already witnessing a strong recovery in air travel, and we see decades of growth ahead of us.”
According to Boeing’s 2021 Commercial Market Outlook, India would require more than 2,200 new aeroplanes in South Asia, valued at approximately $320 billion over the next 20 years.