Home / Companies / News /  Air India aims to gain 30% domestic market share under Project Vihaan.AI

Air India has formed a five-year strategy to gain at least 30% market share under its transformation plan called Vihaan.AI. The airline has named the transformation plan after the Sanskrit word which means the Dawn of a new era.

Under the five-year roadmap, the airline also strives to significantly grow its international routes and aims to focus on sustainable growth, profitability and market leadership.

The airline CEO Campbell Wilson, former head of Scoot Airline, called it a historic transformation for a ‘brave new Air India.’

“The transformation has already started - a slew of initiatives in areas like refurbishing cabins, serviceable seats, in-flight entertainment system are already underway. We are also adopting proactive maintenance and refining flight schedules to enhance on-time performance," Wilson said.

“Our fleet expansion will involve a combination of both narrow-bodied and wide-bodied aircrafts to cater to varied network needs. The excitement and shared commitment to drive Vihaan.ai is palpable across the organisation and stakeholders will recognise the changes as the new face of Air India emerges,"Wilson added.

Air India served as government-run enterprise and the national carrier for a period of 69 years before being reacquired by the Tata Group in January 2022 under a government-led strategic divestment programme.

The airline had acquired a huge debt over the years and struggled to post profits. As per provisional figures for the financial year 2020-21, Air India’s net loss was estimated at about Rs. 9779 crore.

Recently, Air India had also announced that it will induct 30 more aircraft in its fleet by 2023 as it eyes expansion and fleet revamp. The new aircraft will enter the airline’s fleet from late 2022 and will increase the airline’s fleet size by 25%.

The airline has signed up for leasing 21 Airbus A320neos, 4 Airbus A321neos and 5 Boeing B777-200LRs. Air India will be able to offer premium economy long haul flights for the first time with the B777-200 LR aircraft. The incoming B777-200LRs will result in additional flights between Mumbai -San Francisco, Mumbai-Newark, Mumbai-New York, and a thrice weekly Bangalore- San Francisco service. The narrow-body A321 aircraft and A320 will serve domestic sectors as well as short-haul international destinations.

Air India currently has 113 aircraft in its fleet out of which 87 planes are operational. These include 54 narrow-body planes and 33 wide-body aircraft. The inoperative 16 narrow-body aircraft and 10 wide-body aircraft are expected to return to service by early 2023.

Under Project Vihaan, the airline aims to emerge best in class in customer service, in technology, in product, in reliability and in hospitality. The Airline’s CEO Campbell Wilson along with senior management members will engage employees across regions, departments, and locations through a series of physical and hybrid sessions on the transformation plan.

The airline’s immediate focus will be on fixing the basics.

Currently, the Tata Group has four airlines under its umbrella –Air India, Air India Express, AirAsia India and Vistara, a joint venture with Singapore Airlines. The Tata Group has decided to relocate three out of four airlines, Air India, Air India Express and AirAsia India to one common office in Gurugram by March 2023.

As per July data from Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Air India had a market share of 8.4% in the domestic market. The combined market share of the Tata Group airlines Air India Express, Vistara, AirAsia India and Air India stood at 23.4%. IndiGo is currently the largest airline in India with 58.8% market share.

In on-time performance, AirAsia India was the most punctual airline in July with 95.5% on-time performance, Vistara was second at 89% and Air India was fourth at 83%.

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