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AirDeccan plans to raise $40 mn more

Raghuvir Badrinath in Bangalore | March 31, 2004 09:50 IST

In its second round of fund infusion, no-frills airline AirDeccan is looking to raise $40 million by July 2004. The company has also dropped the idea of roping in a foreign airline as an equity partner even if the government allows it.

"Our business has been good and we are expanding operations. For this, we will raise around $40-50 million this time. We expect to sign the deal by July," AirDeccan Managing Director G R Gopinath told Business Standard. In its first round of funding, the airline had sold a 10 per cent stake to a Mauritius-based fund for $5 million.

On how much stake the company would divest this time, Gopinath said: "It depends on the valuation of our shares. We are talking to 3-4 global investors who have invested in no-frills airlines in other parts of the world."

On the airline's decision not to seek investment from foreign airlines if and when the government permitted it, Gopinath said: "We feel more comfortable with strategic financial investors. Anticipating a green signal from the government, a couple of foreign airlines have approached us for becoming equity partners. But, we are unlikely to go for it even if the government allows it. Usually, overseas airlines press for their branding or some sort of branding arrangement, which is not acceptable to us. We have a strong brand in AirDeccan and we do not want to dilute it."

The airline recently bought seven Airbus aircraft to fly to major cities in the country. Till now, AirDeccan had restricted itself to southern India.

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