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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

SpiceJet chief executive Niel Mills resigns

PTI  Mumbai, July 24, 2013
First Published: 08:03 IST(24/7/2013) | Last Updated: 08:04 IST(24/7/2013)

SpiceJet chief executive Niel Mills has put in his papers 18 months before his contract was to end, but the management is yet to accept his resignation, sources familiar with the development said on Wednesday.

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Mills is the third CEO for the Chennai-based private carrier in the past five years. Mills could not be reached for comments.

The resignation comes amidst reports that the Kalanthi Maran-owned airline is planing to raise funds, including through strategic investors, to cope with increased competition. Sources also said the management is yet to accept Mill's resignation.

A spokesperson of the low-cost airline refused to confirm or deny the development, saying they do not respond to market speculation.

The industry was abuzz with rumours that promoters were upset with the poor earnings in the last fiscal when SpiceJet reported a loss of Rs. 191 crore, which they blamed on the cheap ticket scheme Mills has offered in January.

Mills' exit from SpiceJet comes a few months after its chief commercial officer Harish Moideen Kutty resigned, a little over a year after he joined the company.

Kutty's resignation came days after the airline reported a more-than-expected loss of Rs. 191 crore in FY2013. He was the second chief commercial officer to quit.

Mills joined SpiceJet in 2010 and was hired by Maran from FlyDubai after the media baron bought the airline from NRI promoter Bhulo Kansagra in the same year.

In the last three years, the promoters have pumped Rs. 350 crore into SpiceJet, which has lost Rs. 796 crore.

SpiceJet, started in 2005, has a market share of about 20% as opposed to IndiGo's 30 per cent. SpiceJet has 56 aircraft.


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