Mumbai: Jet Airways’ board Thursday discussed ways to raise funds without taking an investor on board as chairman Naresh Goyal does not want to give up control in the loss-making carrier he set up 25 years ago, a source said.
At an unscheduled board meeting at the airlines headquarters in Mumbai, which lasted for over four hours, various cost-reduction measures also came up for discussions, said the source.
In the red for three consecutive quarters, Jet Airways has been gasping for funds to keep the airline afloat amid liquidity crunch.
However, amid all this, rating agency Icra has downgraded Jet Airways’ long-term rating for the second time in recent months and its largest lender SBI ordered for a “forensic" audit of the listed airline’s books.
“Goyal wants to retain the control in the airline. He wants to explore alternative route of capital infusion. He wants the management to find out ways and means to resurrect the airline, the source said.
Notably, Goyal retaining control was reportedly a major issue that became a roadblock in Jet Airways talks with Tata Sons for a possible stake sale over a month ago.
During the meeting it was also discussed how the airline can prune the cost further and make it viable in the long-term, the source added.
A query sent to a Jet Airways spokesperson remained unanswered.
Besides Goyal, the meeting was attended by board members Ashok Chawla, Nasim Zaidi and Rajshree Pathy, the source said.
Group CFO and Goyals key negotiator during the stake sale talks with Etihad in 2013, Hamid Ali, was also part of the meeting, among others, he added.