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Sat 15 Aug 2015 01:06 AM

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Etihad, Jet Airways chiefs hail partnership as market share soars

Etihad boss James Hogan says deal has added $2.5bn to Jet's value and is delivering lower costs to both airlines

Etihad, Jet Airways chiefs hail partnership as market share soars
(from left to right) Cramer Ball, Jet Airways’ chief executive; Naresh Goyal, Jet Airways’ chairman; James Hogan, Etihad Airways’ president and CEO.

The investment of Etihad Airways into India's Jet Airways is delivering strong results for both airlines across network growth, revenue enhancement and operational and cost improvements, senior executives have said.

Speaking at a media conference in Mumbai, Naresh Goyal, Jet Airways’ chairman, James Hogan, Etihad's president and CEO, and Cramer Ball, Jet Airways’ chief executive all hailed the partnership.

Hogan said its partnership strategy has provided value to Jet Airways in excess of $2.5 billion, is delivering lower operating costs and greater efficiency for both airlines, and contributing strongly to the Indian economy.

The executives said the two airlines together now offer more flights to and from India than any other airline, with a 21 percent share of the country’s booming international air travel market. 

Since Etihad's 24 percent investment in Jet Airways was finalised in November 2013, the two airlines have increased from nine to 15 the number of direct routes between India and Abu Dhabi, introduced wide-bodied aircraft on key routes, and increased to multiple daily flights in some markets.

The senior executives said that the airlines now offer a combined total of 40,000 seats each way, each week between India and Abu Dhabi.

Goyal said: “Our strategic collaboration with Etihad Airways includes network integration, joint sales effort, sharing of resources, collaborated procurement and knowledge transfer. All of these have enabled us to leverage cost advantages and economies of scale to the eventual benefit of our guests, as well as our employees.

“Together with Etihad Airways, we now operate over 4,300 international flights a month, more flights to/from India than any other airline and provide our guests with an unparalleled global and domestic network, with perhaps the best and most convenient connectivity.”

Jet Airways now has its code on Etihad Airways flights to 33 destinations across the world, while Etihad Airways now places its code on 60 Jet Airways routes, mostly within India. 

Hogan said: “Before our equity deal with Jet Airways, we had two percent of the international traffic out of India. Today, with Jet Airways, we have 21 percent of the market, and combined, we are the dominant carriers out of India.

“Jet Airways is now our number one equity partner for revenue and passenger contribution on Etihad Airways. India is now Abu Dhabi’s number one source market for international visitors.”

He added: “Jet Airways is a perfect partner for us. It is a strong, recognisable brand in India, has an established network and infrastructure, a skilled workforce and a large customer base. 

“Etihad Airways is an active investor and a strategic partner. We provided fresh capital and financial stability for Jet Airways, assisted global network growth, increased flight connectivity, and delivered efficiencies through activities including joint procurement and resource sharing.”

In the first six months of 2015 Etihad Airways transferred more than 235,000 guests onto Jet Airways’ network into India through its codeshare partnership, with Jet Airways providing 182,000 guests onto the Etihad Airways network.

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