New Indian airline Akasa Air to lure staff with share offer

The new Indian low-cost carrier Akasa Air, which is due to launch operations in the upcoming summer of 2022, aims to take an odd step to lure employees. The newcomer of India’s cheap flight market plans to offer airline shares to its top staff . 

Speaking to The Economic Times on February 4, 2022, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Akasa Vinay Dube said that since the global aviation industry currently deals with a lack of professionals, Akasa Air considers taking an unusual approach to encourage employees to join the company. The airline will offer its shares to an unspecified number of top employees instead of a selected group of senior executives.  

The CEO outlined that such considerations are backed by Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, an Indian billionaire and the main investor of Akasa Air who has already invested $35 million into the new player of the Indian aviation market.  

Even though the CEO did not hint which employees could expect such an offer, Dube made it clear that stock options will not be offered for regular flight crew members. In the meantime, the CEO disclosed that those stock options that the airline plans to offer will “be somewhat reminiscent of tech startups where they offer employee stock ownership plans.” 

Founded in 2021, Akasa Air is due to obtain its Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) from the Indian Ministry of Civil Aviation. The company has already unveiled its branding and logo, which the airline said symbolizes the warmth of the rising sun and an effortless flying bird.  

The airline will fly a Boeing 737 MAX aircraft fleet that should consist of 70 jets of the type to be acquired in the upcoming four years.  

Akasa Air expects to start operations as soon as May 2022. 


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