Evincing interest to invest, few parties have approached us, says SpiceJet

Friday, 24 July,New Delhi: SpiceJet on Friday said a few potential investors are currently in “exploratory and preliminary” discussion with it, evincing interest to invest in the no-frills carrier while denying reports of entering into any commercial tie-up with any airline.

“A few parties have approached us and evinced interest in making investments into SpiceJet Limited. The deliberations with the potential investors, however, are only at an exploratory and preliminary stage,” SpiceJet said in a regulatory filing.

However, since the deliberations with such prospective investors are at an exploratory and preliminary stage it will be improper to comment on the specifics of any possible stake sale or the valuation of the Company at this stage, it said.

The statement came in the wake of media reports stating that SpiceJet was in early stage of talks with Qatar Airways for a commercial tie-up including a possible stake sale to the Gulf-based airline.

The reports also stated that negotiations will initially involve SpiceJet signing an interline agreement with the Gulf-based carrier. Interestingly, Akbar Al Baker, group chief executive officer of Qatar Airways had on several occasions shown interest in picking up stakes in the largest domestic share by market share, IndiGo.

The Gurgaon-headquartered airline also clarified that it has not entered into any interline arrangement with any other airline as reported in a section of media.

The no-frills carrier, which was on the verge of closure in December last year, has seen a change in ownership with original promoter Ajay Singh back at the helm.

Singh currently holds 60.29% stake in the carrier.

SpiceJet would continue to look at options (for funding), Singh had said in June adding that the funding requirement would depend on much the company needs.

“Some investors are interested in the airline … We continue to look at options (for investment),” Singh had said at the 10 year celebrations of SpiceJet in June.

After seven quarters of losses, SpiceJet posted a net profit of Rs 22.51 crore in the January-March period helped by renegotiated contracts and settlements and provisioning for re-delivery expenses, among others.

The airline had reported a net loss of Rs 321.5 crore in the same period a year ago.