Air India’s progress has been ‘nothing short of stunning’, says CEO

 Air India CEO Campbell Wilson on Friday said that its progress over the last 12 months has been “nothing short of stunning and there is of course, much more that needs to be done”.

Tata Group took over debt-laden Air India a year ago, on January 27, 2022, from the Central government, marking the beginning of a new journey for the carrier.

“Taken together, the progress over the last 12 months has been nothing short of stunning, even if so much of what we have been working on has been behind the scenes, building platforms and capabilities so that our future ambitions can take flight. There is of course much more that needs to be done, and everyone – internally and externally – is hungry for us to do it,” he said.

During the last one year, total operating aircraft increased by 27 per cent to 100 while the number of average daily flights increased by 30 per cent and weekly international flights increased by 63 per cent.

Besides, 16 new international routes were launched or announced and frequency increased on nine others. Average daily passenger uplift increased by 72 per cent while average daily revenue has doubled and average daily frequency per domestic route has increased by 81 per cent.

The Air India CEO also talked about merger of Air Asia or Vistara with Air India and a few other initiatives.

“Even as we work on improving Air India, we have not shied away from other ambitious actions, such as merging Air India Express with Air Asia, or Vistara with Air India, or kicking off the establishment of a new InfoTech Centre, or an Aviation Academy. And that’s not to mention our much talked-about short- and-medium term fleet expansion,” he added.

Talking about challenges, he said, “As we step into year two of Air India 2.0, we acknowledge that in any project of scale, there will be challenges along the way. More than our successes, it is how we respond to our lapses that will define us.”

Campbell said that transforming any organisation entails deep cultural shifts, which is why we have put such a high priority on communicating with you, and on improving policies, practices and support systems, not just benefits. Fostering integrity, accountability, collaboration and trust are keys to future success, and must be guiding lights.

“We will continue to communicate and roll out new things, being clear about the rising expectations we must all meet, how these relate to you and how we will support. Air India is on a journey to greater heights, and we want all of you to rise with it,” he added.

Air India has witnessed many controversies during the past couple of weeks regarding the peeing incident which occurred on November 26, 2022. The airline has faced criticism from various quarters for not taking timely action and has been penalised by the aviation regulator on two such cases.

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