Expressions of interest called for sale of India’s Go First airline

Tailplanes of Go First aircraft, displaying airline logo
Photo Credit: Go First

An invitation for expressions of interest in the sale of troubled Indian airline Go Airlines (India) Ltd, Go First has been posted by the Resolution Professional appointed to oversee the insolvency process.

Expressions of interest sought

According to local news source the Hindu Business Line, the newspaper advertisement appeared on Monday 10 July inviting Expressions of Interest for the sale of the Indian airline.

The advertisement gives the last date for receipt of expressions by interested parties as August 9, 2023.

Go First recently filed for insolvency with the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), after a protracted period of problems with the acquisition of spare parts for the maintenance of engines on its Airbus A320neo fleet.

With roughly about 90 percent of their fleet equipped with the problematic Pratt & Whitney engines, the follow-on effect has forced the airline to operate 27 percent fewer flights in March 2023 in comparison to March 2022.

The supply chain problems and resultant delays in normal and unforeseen maintenance cycles resulted in the decision by the airline to ground the majority of its affected fleet.


Events to date

When the Indian low-cost carrier first commenced insolvency proceedings in May, the airline CEO Kaushik Khona had originally intimated that the intent of proceedings was to re-establish the carrier back to operational service rather than to sell it.

As part of the insolvency proceedings, the NCLT allowed the decision to nominate a Resolution Professional by aircraft lessors.

The new management has submitted a resolution plan and the aviation regulator DGCA subsequently decided to conduct an audit on the airline before giving it permission to re-start operations.

The DGCA said would give all the necessary approvals only after the revival of the airline’s operations and facilities at its bases in national capital New Delhi and in the financial capital of Mumbai.

These audits by the Indian aviation regulator were being conducted last week between 4 July and 6 July, 2023.

“The special audit to be conducted from July 4 to 6 shall be focused on the safety-related aspects and continued compliance of the requirements to hold an Air Operator Certificate, as well as on physical verification of the arrangements made for the resumption of flight operations,” a spokesperson said in a statement to Telegraph India.

Late last week, the Delhi High Court ruled that lessors of aircraft leased to the grounded airline were permitted access so that they can take care of maintenance of their aircraft.

The latest development with the revelation of an Expression of Interest in the sale of the troubled carrier perhaps signals a change of the original intent to rejuvenate the operation following the recent sequence of events.

By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 3 Min Read
3 Min Read
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