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Air India boss says significant investment will be made to expand AI Express fleet

With Air India looking set to command a 30 percent market share both domestically and internationally, the airline’s chief Campbell Wilson said significant investment would be made to grow the Air India Express fleet after the AirAsia India merger.

The Tata Group is working to streamline its airline business and will have a single low-cost carrier under the Air India Express brand after AirAsia India merges with it. The merger is expected to be completed by the end of 2023.

“We will also invest significantly in the dramatic fleet, network and market share growth of the new Air India Express in the coming months and years. This growth and the growth of a full-fledged Air India will provide many new and exciting opportunities for the Group and employees,” Campbell said in a statement on Wednesday employees.

To ensure alignment between the two carriers, Campbell said he would chair the boards of Air India Express and AirAsia India during and after the integration process.

Air India CCO Nipun Aggarwal, respective CEOs – Aloke Singh and Sunil Bhaskaran – Air India independent directors – PR Ramesh and Alice Vaidyan – will be on both boards. Air India Chief Financial Officer Vinod Hejmadi will remain on the board of Air India Express, according to the release.

According to Campbell, the two budget carriers have a combined 52 aircraft and serve more than 20 domestic and 13 international destinations.

On Wednesday, it was announced that Air India has signed agreements for a 100 percent stake in AirAsia India. The carrier is a joint venture between Tata Sons and Air Asia Investment Ltd. Tata Sons has 83.67% stake and AirAsia has the remaining 16.33% stake.

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