Former SpiceJet managers launch executive aviation operator in India 

Shutterstock // Angel DiBilio

The former Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Indian low-cost airline SpiceJet, Arun Kashyap, has launched a new executive jet operator, Sirius India Airlines, which will be offering private jet charter services.  

Another senior executive at SpiceJet, Shilpa Bhatia, who, until March 2024, was the airline’s Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) is also reported to be linked to this project. 

The new venture starts with a Hawker Beechcraft 4000 super midsize business jet, although plans are already afoot to add two more aircraft of the same type later this year. The startup’s business plan calls for a fleet of up to 12 aircraft of various makes and sizes, potentially up to the 100-seat category, by the close of 2025. 

Sirius India Airlines, which has already signed a partnership with Dubai-based Airavat, the executive aviation arm of logistics and shipping conglomerate, Transworld Group.  

Indian aviation is booming. While major airlines have been placing orders for hundreds of aircraft, the executive jet industry is also experiencing its own phase of expansion in the country. May 2023 saw the launch of IndiaJets, a startup which, much like Sirius India Airlines, is led by former low-cost airline managers. IndiaJets aims to replicate in the Indian market the fractional business model which has proven to be popular in the United States. 

Another Indian executive aviation operator, JetSetGo has also announced plans to expand in the coming years with the acquisition of up to 280 electric and hybrid aircraft from three different manufacturers:, Horizon Aircraft, and Overair. JetSetGo is also raising $900 million by issuing a mix of debt and equity, to acquire 12 aircraft and launch operations to Europe. The firm is also considering a stock market listing by 2027 or 2028. 

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