Eye on full-year profit in 2017, Jet to cut costs

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Mumbai | Published: June 2, 2015 12:02:42 AM

Naresh Goyal-controlled Jet Airways will optimise costs on selling, distribution and maintenance as it looks to make...

Naresh Goyal-controlled Jet Airways will optimise costs on selling, distribution and maintenance as it looks to make a full-year profit in 2017.

Speaking to analysts, Jet Airways acting CFO Ravichandran Narayan said a lot of efficiencies were being brought in to drive down costs, which will help the airline relalise its goal by 2017.

As a side-effect of its attempt to cut costs, however, Jet saw payroll expenses increase by R340 crore to R2,040 crore last fiscal, driven by a one-time expense. Jet Airways chief executive Cramer Ball added the airline expects payroll expenses to stabilise in the coming year.  Jet Airways had on Friday reported a net loss of R1,729 crore in the final quarter of FY15, down from last year’s R2,154 crore.

For the full year ended March 2015, it made a loss of R2,100 crore, about half the loss it made last year, after earning more in passenger revenues. Total debt stood at R11,902 crore, or $ 1.9 billion, at the end of March 31, 2015.

“The repayment of the loans during the quarter was as follows: The total loans repaid stood at R662 crore, equivalent to $96.9 million.The aircraft loan stood at R322 crore, equivalent to $44 million and the other loans repayments were R340 crore,  equivalent to $ 52.9 million,” Ravichandran said.

Jet Airways, which has leased out nine aircraft to Etihad and Turkish Airlines, could bring back these aircraft and deploy them on US routes after the recent US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) upgraded Indian aviation regulators.

The airline has handed over pink slips to 50 of its expat pilots, prematurely terminating their contracts as part of its cost-cutting measures. The emphasis is clearly on reducing dependency on the high-cost overseas crew. The total number of expat pilots at Jet Airways currently stands at 88.

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