India’s Vistara places $3.1 billion order with Airbus, Boeing

Vistara said it would use the new planes to boost its domestic network and support its international operations, which are scheduled to start later this year. (Courtesy Vistara Facebook)
Updated 11 July 2018
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India’s Vistara places $3.1 billion order with Airbus, Boeing

MUMBAI: India’s newest airline Vistara said on Wednesday it had ordered 19 jets from Boeing and Airbus for a combined $3.1 billion as it prepares to launch international flights.
As the country enjoys a boom in air travel owing to its growing middle class, airlines are rapidly expanding their fleets to capture a slice of the market.
Vistara, a joint venture between Indian conglomerate Tata and Singapore Airlines, said it would buy six Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and 13 planes from Airbus’s fleet of A320neo and A321neo aircraft.
“These orders are a landmark step in Vistara’s journey and demonstrate our deep-rooted commitment to contributing to the rise of the Indian aviation industry and to offering more choices to our customers,” chief executive Leslie Thng said in a statement.
The company, which began operating in 2015, added that it had also agreed to hire another 37 Airbus A320neos from leasing companies.
Vistara said it would use the new planes to boost its domestic network and support its international operations, which are scheduled to start later this year.
In April, Indian airline Jet Airways said it had entered an agreement to buy 75 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in a deal that could be worth more than $7 billion.
There has been a six-fold increase in passenger numbers in India over the past decade as customers take advantage of better connectivity and cheaper fares thanks to a host of low-cost airlines.


Kuwait Projects Co. hires Goldman Sachs for sale of OSN — sources

Updated 9 min 51 sec ago
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Kuwait Projects Co. hires Goldman Sachs for sale of OSN — sources

DUBAI: Kuwait Projects Co. (KIPCO), the Gulf state’s largest investment company, has hired Goldman Sachs to advise it on the sale of its majority stake in pay-television operator OSN, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
OSN, which this year signed the first partnership deal in the region with Netflix, posted a 71 percent drop in income in the three months to Sept. 30, according to KIPCO’s latest financial results.
KIPCO and Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
KIPCO said in the results, released last week, that the company’s board had approved initiating a plan to divest its 60.5 percent equity interest in Panther Media Group, also known as OSN, and had engaged an international investment banker for the purpose. It did not disclose the name of the banker.
With the rights to broadcast into countries across the Middle East and North Africa, OSN has more than 180 channels, according to its website. Its other shareholder is Mawarid Group.
OSN faces subdued demand in its core markets due to piracy, geopolitical factors and fiscal reforms by governments which have led to sizeable expatriate populations leaving some of its core markets, said Anuj Rohtagi, director of group financial control at KIPCO in KIPCO’s third-quarter earnings conference call on Nov. 15. He added OSN was taking action to cut costs and attract new customers.
It is not the first time KIPCO has explored offloading at least some of its stake in OSN. In 2014, it said it planned to start the process for an initial public offering of OSN shares.