Despite losses of Rs 347 crore in the first 18 months of operations, Vijay Mallya, chairman, United Breweries, is bullish about the future of Kingfisher Airlines.
Never mind the rising costs and falling tariffs, the flamboyant Mallya is sanguine about the airlines breaking even in 2008-09.
In an interview to a private news channel, Mallya said, "The airline did lose money. It continues to lose money…But we have the staying power and the sustenance that it takes." Mallya claimed that the airline's "average ticket value was amongst the highest in the country and that it was getting twice the yield of a low fare carrier."
He further claimed that Kingfisher had expressions of interest from a number of private equity houses but it was in no hurry to clinch a deal because "we aren't desperately looking for cash". On the proposed IPO, he insisted that the airline had no need to raise public funds and was not dependent on an IPO. "Our business model did not factor in raising public funds to run this airline … It was never predicated on an IPO. We have a paid up capital of $100 million."