Chennai-based Paramount Airways Pvt. Ltd, which has been operating in south India till now, will enter western India in April by connecting Pune and Goa from Bangalore.
The western region accounts for the most in terms of passenger revenues, followed by north, south and east.
This full-service carrier, which flies five Brazilian-made Embraer planes, is acquiring two more Embraer E-170 aircraft in April and May.
“We have always said that we will enter the west Indian market by 2008. Following Goa and Pune, we will introduce flights to Nagpur, Ahmedabad, Bhopal and, finally, Mumbai by the end of this calendar year,” said Paramount Airways managing director M. Thiagarajan. “This is a logical extension of our services. With a market share of 26%, we have saturated the south Indian market.”
The airline, promoted by Paramount Mills (P) Ltd, will operate flights with business class. “We are not into low fare business and thus we are not targeting price-sensitive passengers. We are targeting those passengers who are willing to spend for a different and premium travel experience,” he said.
Apart from scheduled airlines, Paramount Airways will be competing with regional carriers coming up in this sector shortly. In August, the civil aviation ministry had proposed a new category of operating aviation permits to carriers that aim to connect tier II and tier III or smaller cities.
Some of the regional airlines waiting in the wings to start regional operations include Star Aviation Pvt. Ltd, Air Dravida, Trans India Aviation Pvt. Ltd, MDLR Airlines Pvt. Ltd, Emric Aviation Pvt. Ltd and King Air.
According to an analyst with a domestic broking firm based in Mumbai, Paramount’s entry into the western region will not take away the market share from existing scheduled carriers.
Paramount today connects Chennai, Madurai, Coimbatore, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Visakhapatnam, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram.
Svec Constructions withdraws IPO
Mumbai: Hyderabad-based Svec Constructions Ltd on Tuesday withdrew its initial public offering (IPO), citing poor response from institutional investors, an official at its lead manager Karvy Investor Services said.
The company had hoped to raise a minimum Rs34 crore from its four million-share public offer, but failed to garner this even after extending the closing date by three days to 13 February. The issue received subscriptions for 0.24 times the number of shares on offer so far, data on the National Stock Exchange website shows.
“There was poor response, mainly from the institutional investors, and based on their feedback, we have withdrawn the issue,” Rajneesh Rangari, country head at Karvy Investor Services said. Reuters
Spectrum to all players who applied ‘by 25 Sep’
New Delhi: The government on Tuesday submitted before the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) that it would allot spectrum to all players which had received letters of intent for starting telephone services, but a lot depends on defence services vacating radio frequencies for civilian use.
Appearing for the department of telecom (DoT), additional solicitor general Vikas Singh informed TDSAT that the government would allot spectrum to all operators which had applied by 25 September.
“We (government) would allot spectrum to everyone who have applied by that day,” Singh said during a proceeding before the telecom regulator on a case filed by GSM operators Idea Cellular Ltd and Spice Telecom to stay the spectrum allocation process. PTI
Game show to boost class V textbook sales
New Delhi: Class V textbooks are likely to see a sudden spurt in demand. Star Plus, the flagship general entertainment channel from Star India Pvt. Ltd, announced the reality quiz show Kya Aap Paanchvi Pass Se Tez Hain? based on the international game show format, ‘Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?’
The show, to be hosted by Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan, will carry a grand prize of Rs5 crore and be based on asking adult contestants questions from school textbooks of classes I to V.
The show will essentially replace Rs.Kaun Banega Krorepati’, the high-profile quiz show successively hosted by Amitabh Bachchan and Shahrukh Khan that helped Star Plus consolidate its leadership position in the general entertainment space.
“When Star and Shah Rukh joins hands, expectations from the Indian audience are sky-high. We hope to live up to those expectations by bringing them clean entertainment in the form of this show, Star India CEO Uday Shankar said, without giving a definite date for the show to go on air.
The launch of the show will be preceded by a countrywide talent hunt for five children, who will be the ‘classmates’ in the show. Sruthijith K.K.
Lumax Auto to spend Rs200cr on new units
New Delhi:Lumax Auto Industries Ltd, a maker of headlamps and tail lights for automobiles, said on Tuesday it planned to spend Rs200 crore on building three new factories and modernize its existing ones to serve new products from customers such as Tata Motors Ltd and Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd.
Deepak Jain, executive director of the company, said Lumax Auto will build a new factory in Singur that will make 350,000 lamp sets a year for the Tata Nano and two other factories in Pantnagar and Haridwar, where Hero Honda Motors Ltd and Mahindra are asembling vehicles.
Jain said the company would raise the money needed for expansion through a mix of equity and debt, but didn’t give details.
After the expansion, the Rs 550-crore by revenues Lumax will have increased its capacity by 1.5 million units to 8.5 million units. Staff Writer
Andhra Pradesh cuts sales tax on ATF
Hyderabad: In a development that will force other states to follow suit, the Andhra Pradesh government has decided to lower sales tax on jet fuel (also known as avition turbine fuel or ATF) from 33% to 4%.
Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy announced this concession while formally inaugurating a test flight at the greenfield airport developed by GMR Group at Shamsabad, Hyderabad.
The minister said the state will be losing more than Rs50-60 crore per year on the account of reduction in the sales tax, but wanted more airlines and passengers flying into the state. Union civil aviation minister Praful Patel said the state will benefit in the long run with this reduction. P. R. Sanjai