The starting of the end of Jet Airways can be found back to many events which have caused to shut down the operation. Possibly, the most consequential of those incidents happened on a Sunday afternoon last Diwali.
Naresh Goyal and his financial advisers went to Deepal Pareskh’s Mumbai residence seeking advice on how to save Jet. Meanwhile, the Tata was analyzing the option of saving Goyal’s troubled carrier by buying Jet. A private equity consortium led by TPG Capital and Indigo Partners LLC, a specialist aviation investor, was also there.
Goyal was advised by HDFC’s avuncular chairman Parekh to step back and making way for a new investor. Though Mr. Goyal had discussed the matter with many important friends in the fields of politicians, policymakers, chief executives, airline lessors, and manufacturers, he listened only to himself.
Regarding this, Shukor Yusof, founder of Malaysian research firm Endau Analytics told the reporters, “In retrospect, perhaps Goyal ought to have put more faith in the people he hired to help run the airline”.
“He does bear responsibility for many of the carrier’s strategic mistakes. He finds it hard to let go, and this has worsened the situation,” he added.
A top airline executive told the sources, “Goyal has failed his company, his employees and his shareholders. He had a readymade investment opportunity from Tata Sons, which he squandered. Jet was sailing till January. Then it all went downhill.”
Jet Airways is having a massive Rs. 21 crore loss every day and it has dues of at least Rs.15,000 crore. Industry insiders often quote a line attributed to Goyal, “I am the person in Jet. When people look at Jet Airways, they look at me.” “Don’t just come to us for money. Come if you want us to help you turn around your airline”, said the Delta Air Lines executive. Delta could have been Jet’s richest suitor as it offered Rs 300 per share while Goyal demanded over Rs 400.