Kingfisher Airlines launches; first run on 9 May

MUMBAI: In the true Mallya style, the UB Group made its formal entry into the aviation sector on 7 May with the launch of Kingfisher Airlines. The airline will take its first flight on 9 May. Kingfisher will be the first private Indian airline to commence operations with brand new aircraft.



A total of 33 new Airbus aircraft are on order - 10 A 320 and A 319s - with options open to buying a further 20 aircraft. Kingfisher will also have a single class of travel -Kingfisher Class with a total of 174 seats in the A320-200 and 144 seats in the A319s.



As reported earlier by, for inflight entertainment, the airline has got a personal video screen for every seat with 10 audio and 5 video channels.



All the aircraft will also be equipped with an automated external defibrillator, a simple device used to treat sudden cardiac arrest as well as a paperless cockpit. The entry by the UB group into the aviation segment is a project of $ 1.8 billion.

Civil aviation has been the latest area of interest for the UB Group. Speaking at the launch, UB Group chairman Dr Vijay Mallya said, "After the entry of Kingfisher in the civil aviation sector, this too will be a sector that will attract a lot of FDI (foreign direct investment)."

Stressing on the new emerging India, and more importantly the new consumer class of Indians, Mallya stated that that Kingfisher Airlines would satiate in every way the desires of this new emerging class. "We believe we understand consumer needs and aspirations as well as what one calls value for money and Kingfisher will address all the three stated aspects."

Mallya also said that with the coming of Kingfisher Airlines, the civil aviation sector for the first time will witness a double digit growth. Another interesting point was that this was first time that a true synergy between the public and the private sector company has taken place as Kingfisher airlines has outsourced all their ground activities to Indian Airlines.

Says aviation minister Prafful Patel,"The Indian civil aviation sector must expand and both the public and private sector players need to ensure its growth. The boom in aviation needs to be fueled by these players and the Government will extend all its support and encouragement for the same."

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