Cash-strapped Jet Airways' crisis seems to have benefited rival SpiceJet. The low-cost airline is hiring Jet Airways engineers and pilots at a much lower pay than their current compensation. According to reports, Jet Airways pilots have been asked to take salary cuts of 25-30 per cent, while engineers have been settling at 50 per cent of their current pay.
An aviation source told news agency IANS that it is perhaps the prospect of closure that is making these employees take salary cuts. The source also added that, even so the average salary at Jet Airways has also been higher than the industry level.
A SpiceJet executive told the agency that they are offering salaries based on their own structure and not the inflated salary paid by Jet. A Jet Airways senior commander said that pilots with 4-5 years of experience are moving to other airlines due to salary delays. He added that loans and other financial commitments are making these employees look for jobs with certainty and timely salary payment. Not many senior-level pilots have left Jet Airways because their seniority and salary might be impacted, the officer said.
Moreover, apart from Jet Airways, only Air India Express and SpiceJet operate Boeing fleets in domestic routes. Those operating Airbus aircraft will have to undergo conversion costs for both pilots and engineers and are, hence, reluctant to hire technical personnel from Jet.
However, aviation experts feel that the current situation is temporary and that it will normalise once Jet Airways gets back to its feet.
Jet Airways is said to have received Expression of Interest (EOI) from four companies interested in buying a stake in the beleaguered airline as the lenders to cash-strapped airline deferred the Wednesday (April 10) deadline for submitting initial bids by two days to Friday (April 12). The four firms- Etihad Airways PJSC, National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Ltd (NIIF) and private equity firms TPG Capital and Indigo Partners.