SpiceJet Chairman Ajay Singh, Busy Bee Airways Submit Joint Bid For Go First

The collaboration will lead to improved cost management, revenue growth and a stronger position in the market, SpiceJet said.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>Ajay Singh, chairman and managing director of SpiceJet. (Photo:&nbsp;Anushree Fadnavis/Reuters)</p></div>
Ajay Singh, chairman and managing director of SpiceJet. (Photo: Anushree Fadnavis/Reuters)

SpiceJet Ltd.'s Chairman and Managing Director, Ajay Singh, has submitted a joint bid with Busy Bee Airways Pvt. to take over Go First.

"SpiceJet's role as the operating partner for the new airline involves providing essential staff, services, and industry expertise," the low-cost carrier said in a press release on Friday.

The collaboration will lead to improved cost management, revenue growth and a stronger position in the market, it said.

The Dubai-based Sky Zone Trading FZE is the second bidder for Go First, according to people with knowledge of the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Bids are currently closed and will be open next week. Lenders will review the bids to decide the successful bidder.

“I firmly believe that GoFirst holds immense potential and can be revitalised to work in close synergy with SpiceJet, benefiting both carriers," Singh said in a statement.

"Apart from coveted slots at domestic and international airports, international traffic rights, and an order for over 100 Airbus Neo planes, Go First is a trusted and valued brand among flyers."

What A Struggling SpiceJet Gains From Showing Interest In Grounded Go First

Grounded carrier Go First has been under a corporate resolution professional since the airline filed for voluntary insolvency in May 2023.

"It's interesting that Ajay Singh has the money to bid for Go First but not to put it in the struggling SpiceJet," Ajay Awtaney, founder and editor of aviation news platform LiveFromALounge, told NDTV Profit.

SpiceJet will lay off up to 15% of its employees by the end of March, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, as the cash-strapped carrier looks to cut costs.

The number of employees in the airline exceeds the required workforce for a reduced fleet post-Covid, the person said on the condition of anonymity. The company has a fleet of 40 planes, down from about 120 prior to the pandemic.

SpiceJet To Lay Off Up To 15% Employees By March-End To Trim Costs

The cash-strapped carrier has prepared a Rs 900 crore overhaul plan, dubbed SpiceJet 3.0, comprising cost-cutting measures and improvements on the operational front, including fleet upgrades and on-time performance.

The company received the first tranche of Rs 744 crore late in January, more than a month after the low-cost carrier said it would raise Rs 2,250 crore through the issuance of securities to 64 investors.

The revival plan comes at a crucial time for the airline as it juggles poor operational performance, beaten-down financials and a flurry of litigation.

Corrects a previous version which wrongly identified Sharjah-based Sky One as the second bidder for Go First.