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Given Rakesh Gangwal’s previous comments on selling his entire holding in InterGlobe over a period of five years, this news comes as no surprise. Of more interest is where will the low-cost airline’s investor turn his attention to next?

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IndiGo’s co-founder Rakesh Gangwal and his family have disclosed they would sell up to $450 million of shares in the budget carrier’s parent holding, InterGlobe Aviation. That represents about 4% of his stake and would be the largest block deal yet by Gangwal. 

Sellers: Gangwal who holds more than 29.72% stake in the company, stepped down from the InterGlobe board in February 2022 and has been gradually selling shares.

Share Price: Gangwal family has put 15.6 million shares for sale with a floor price of $28.87 per share, which is a 5.8% discount to the closing price on Monday.

Other Shareholders: Rahul Bhatia, the other co-founder of IndiGo, and his family own more than 38.05% stake, according to exchange filings.

In another development, Boeing has emerged as the front-runner to book an order for approximately 25 wide-body planes from IndiGo, according to Reuters. Boeing and Airbus have been competing to win the widebody deal since June. 

Order Details: IndiGo is in talks to buy Boeing’s 787 family of twin-aisle aircraft, which has been pitted against Airbus’ A330neo jets. 

Historic Deal: The recent talks come weeks after IndiGo placed a record order for 500 Airbus narrow-body jets, shadowing an earlier deal by rival Air India for 470 Airbus and Boeing planes.

International Operations: Foraying into Central Asia, IndiGo is set to operate four weekly non-stop flights between Delhi and Tashkent from September 22. The airline recently launched new flights to destinations in Africa, West Asia and Southeast Asia.

Aviation Regulator Forms Panel to Ensure Gender Equality in Sector

Civil aviation regulator, Directorate General of Civil Aviation, has set up a four-member committee to  provide suggestions for achieving gender equality in India’s aviation sector.

What the Order Entails: The committee is supposed to formulate norms and submit them to the regulator which it will further circulate among aviation stakeholders to adopt gender equality.

Timeline: The committee will submit its report within six months from the date of its constitution.

Objective: The initiative is in line with the commitment of International Civil Aviation Organizations, which aims to promote participation of women and achieve an aspirational goal of 50-50 (women-men) by 2030 at all professional and higher levels of employment in the global aviation sector.

Uttar Pradesh to Get Nine Heritage Hotels 

The Uttar Pradesh Tourism Department is gearing up to convert nine heritage properties into five-star hotels, a government spokesperson said.

The properties include: 

  • Chattar Manzil in Lucknow
  • Chunar Fort in Mirzapur
  • Barua Sagar Fort in Jhansi
  • Kothi Gulistan-e-Iram
  • Kothi Darshan Vilas
  • Kothi Roshan in Lucknow
  • Barsana Water Palace in Mathura
  • Shukla Talab in Kanpur
  • Tikait Rai Baradari in Bithoor 

Investment Plan: $21.6 million

Facilities: Wellness centers, heritage hotels, resorts, museums, heritage restaurants, banquet halls, adventure activities, homestays, thematic parks, among other units will be constructed in the heritage properties.

Criteria and Responsibilities for Heritage Conservation:

  • Maintaining the layout of archaeological buildings
  • Adapting the use of the building in accordance with its mythological and historical significance
  • Establishing informative signage by developers about the history of the heritage building
  • Showcasing local culture, cuisine, arts, clothing, and cultural practices, as well as developing neighboring villages under corporate social responsibility selected by the developer
  • Providing employment to 25% of local citizens


EaseMyTrip Partners With BluSmart to Boost Electric Mobility

Online travel company EaseMyTrip.com has partnered with electric vehicle ride-hailing platform BluSmart to enable customers book airport transfers through BluSmart’s fleet of electric vehicles in Delhi-National Capital Region and Bengaluru directly via the EaseMyTrip website. 

Aim of the Partnership: Promote sustainability and provide eco-friendly travel alternatives.

“By integrating BluSmart’s fleet into our travel offerings, we aim to create a substantial impact on reducing carbon emissions while providing our customers with eco-conscious travel options,” said Rikant Pittie, co-founder of EaseMyTrip.

Recent Acquisitions: Earlier this month, EaseMyTrip said it is planning to acquire a 51% stake in three Indian travel companies — Guideline Travels, specializing in cruises; TripShope Travel Technologies, a travel and leisure solution provider in Kashmir; and Delhi-based Dook Travels, an integrated travel management company operating across various countries.

Espire Hospitality Group Launches Second Property in Uttarakhand

Name of Hotel: Country Inn Premier – The Prominence, Dehradun. 

Location: The property is strategically located on the Dehradun-Mussoorie road, with close connectivity to cities including Delhi, Punjab and Lucknow.

Number of Rooms: 42 rooms and suites.

Recent Openings: Earlier in April, the group launched its first Country Inn Premier – Pacific, Mussoorie in the state, featuring 48 rooms.

Expansion Plans: Espire Hospitality is in discussions with property owners in Jaipur, North Goa and Dharamshala, to expand its portfolio.

Domestic Air Passenger Traffic Surges 25% in July

Domestic air passenger traffic volume jumped 25% year-on-year to 12.1 million passengers in July, according to latest data from aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

Passenger Load Factors of various domestic airlines in July 2023.

Domestic carriers flew 9.7 million passengers in July 2022.

Market Share of Airlines: 

  • IndiGo carried 7.67 million passengers, cornering a market share of 63.4% during the reporting month.
  • Tata Group-owned Air India flew a total of 1.19 million passengers in July, with a market share of 9.9%.
  • Vistara flew 1.02 million passengers on domestic routes in the previous month with a market share of 8.4%.
  • Air India’s subsidiary AirAsia India saw 900,000 passengers flying on the intra-country routes and accounted for 7.5% of the total traffic during the month.
  • Akasa Air, which completed one year of operations this month once again flew 624,000 passengers in July with a market share of 5.2%.
  • Struggling carrier SpiceJet transported 500,000 passengers during July and had to contend with 4.2% market share. 


Clarks Collection Debuts in Maharashtra With Pune Property 

Hotel Name: Clarks Collection Pune 

Number of Rooms: 87 rooms 

Recent Signings: A 100-room The Cube-Clarks Collection, Ahmedabad and a 50-room Clarks Collection Somnath in the western state of Gujarat.

Expansion Plans: By the end of the financial year 2024, the brand will add 10 more properties to the current portfolio and aims for expansion in Ajmer, Udaipur, Kumbhalgarh, Ahmedabad.

“We are planning to expand pan-India and targeting 65% occupancy in the coming financial year. We are going to invest in technology infrastructure and use AI and deep tech for reaching out to the right audience,” said Prakash Bedi, vice president of Clarks Collection.

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Tags: air traffic, dgca, easemytrip, gender diversity, india, indigo, share price, shareholders, skift india report

Photo credit: IndiGo has reportedly placed an order with Boeing for around 25 wide-body planes. Nadir Hashmi / Indigo Nation

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